Foundry chipmaker United Microelectronics Corp. (Hsinchu, Taiwan) has started high volume manufacturing of MEMS microphone products for New Japan Radio Co. Ltd. (Tokyo, Japan).
The addition of UMC's manufacturing capability to NJR's own wafer fabs in Fukuoka and Kawagoe will ensure a smooth production ramp for NJR's products for this rapidly growing market. NJR has already shipped more than 100 million MEMS microphone ICs
The MEMS microphone market is experiencing high growth, as conventional ECMs (electro condenser microphones) are being phased out in favor of MEMS for the most popular smartphones. UMC has expanded its MEMS manufacturing capacity and resources, and positioned its foundry as a joint process development center with NJR for future generations of MEMS for microphones and other applications.?
"NJR's rapid growth in the MEMS microphone business cannot be achieved without UMC's close support, technical expertise and manufacturing capability. Porting MEMS devices to foundry is extremely difficult since MEMS ICs contain mechanical modules, which cannot be electronically simulated as semiconductor devices," said Takaaki Murata, manager of NJR's corporate office, in a statement issued by UMC. "UMC's superior process control expertise and manufacturing capability ensured a perfect performance match, equal to that of our own mother fab. With UMC's strong support, we expect NJR's MEMS shipments to continue its growth, enabling us to gain market share," he added.
"NJR has been a wonderful UMC partner for many years. We have achieved several significant goals together, including the delivery of the world's lowest noise OpAmp to market," said J.H.Shyu, senior vice president of production and operation integration at UMC, in the same statement.
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