Intel to produce semiconductor chips for cars

Intel is now planning to make semiconductor chips for automobile makers within 6-9 months, according to its CEO.

Intel is one of the world’s top semiconductor manufacturing companies. It designs and manufactures its semiconductor chips. It supplies a wide range of chips to various electronic device manufacturers.

Intel: A savior in the crisis?

Intel’s CEO Pat Gelsinger announced a new business unit called Intel Foundry Services fabs to produce x86, Arm, and RISC-V core chips for external clients. This service will operate as a standalone unit of Intel’s operations. Intel also announced its plans to invest $20 billion into expanding its fabs in Arizona to meet customers’ requirements.

Intel’s CEO said to Reuters that Intel is planning to supply semiconductor chips to automobile makers within 6 to 9 months. Intel’s surprised many industry leaders, as such processes would take much more time.

Intel’s CEO, Pat Gelsinger, said, “We’re hoping that some of these things can be alleviated, not requiring a three- or four-year factory builds, but maybe six months of new products being certified on some of our existing processes.”

Gelsinger also added that intel had begun those engagements already with some of the key component suppliers. Though Gelsinger did not name the component suppliers, he said that the work could occur at Intel’s factories in Oregon, Arizona, New Mexico, Israel, or Ireland. This could counter the domination of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd in the semiconductor industry.

Chips: Indicating poor infrastructure

This announcement may seem far-fetched due to the abridged timeline. But, the information itself is much more significant. Intel will become a major supplier of chips to automobile makers, mainly based in the US, such as General Motors and Ford.

Pat Gelsinger also met officials of the US government in the White House on Monday. The Joe Biden administration has been working hard to mitigate the semiconductor shortage in the US. This has severely affected the automobile makers. Some such as General Motors and Ford have stopped their production due to the shortage.

The president called for a review of the semiconductor supply chain in an executive order in February. He hosted the executives of companies including Intel, Google, Dell, Samsung, Ford, HP, AT&T, Alphabet, General Motors, TSMC, and other companies at the White House for “CEO Summit on Semiconductor and Supply Chain Resilience” on Monday.

Biden also said, “We’ve been falling behind on research and development and manufacturing, and, to put it bluntly, we have to step up our game.”

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Image courtesy of Intel Newsroom/YouTube Screenshot

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