Spansion and XMC Semiconductor announce partnership on 32nm flash memory

Spansion Inc., a developer flash memory solutions for embedded markets, and XMC, China’s fastest-growing 300mm semiconductor foundry, today announced an expanded partnership, to develop and manufacture Spansion 32nm NOR Flash memory. The agreement expands XMC’s current 300mm manufacturing of Spansion’s proprietary 65nm and 45nm flash memory technology.

Demand for flash memory from embedded applications continues to rise as devices become more interconnected and applications are increasingly more feature-rich with enhanced graphics and immersive user interfaces. Continued investment in Flash memory technology is critical as these connected devices demand higher densities, fast read performance, and Spansion-grade quality to ensure consistent operation.

"XMC has proven to be a strong partner for Spansion and is a critical component of our manufacturing strategy. The agreement with XMC will help Spansion meet the industry’s growing demand for advanced flash memory solutions across a range of embedded applications," said John Kispert, president and CEO of Spansion. "The combination of our leading edge 32nm technology and their manufacturing expertise will deliver innovative and high-quality products that will drive differentiation for our embedded customers."

The Spansion and XMC collaboration began in 2008. XMC foundry services, along with Spansion’s flagship manufacturing facility in Austin, Texas, are central to Spansion’s fab lite manufacturing strategy. Spansion utilizes world-class flash memory fabs from both existing internal facilities as well as foundry partnerships to create a flexible, cost-efficient manufacturing network.

“Spansion’s MirrorBit product line continues to scale providing performance and cost advantages.  XMC has been a quiet but important part of that success. There is obviously a lot of trust and confidence in the relationship,“ said Joanne Itow, managing director, Semico Research. “The move to 32nm takes the partnership to the next stage, and is a notable milestone for XMC as they establish themselves as a significant player in the industry.”

“Spansion’s flash memory is at the heart of many of the world’s electronics systems. It is a privilege to have them as a partner to drive the technology to smaller process geometries,” said Simon Yang, CEO of XMC. “The partnership is a good combination of our manufacturing prowess and their proven leading edge flash memory products.”

In 1998, Spansion started development of MirrorBit charge trapping technology to provide a scalable alternative to floating-gate technology.

Parallel and serial NOR products based on Spansion 32nm MirrorBit Charge Trap Technology from XMC will be launched in 2015. Spansion recently introduced the industry’s first 8 Gb NOR Flash memory using 45nm technology, and continues to lead the industry with the highest density and highest performance parallel and serial NOR flash memory products for embedded applications. Additional 45nm NOR Flash memory products will be available throughout 2013 and beyond.

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