By Emmy Yi, SEMI Taiwan
Driven by emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), machine learning and big data, the digital transformation has become an irreversible trend for the electronics manufacturing industry. The global market for smart manufacturing and smart factory technologies is expected to reach US$250 billion in 2018.
“The semiconductor manufacturing process has reached its downscaling limit, making outstanding manufacturing capabilities indispensable for corporations to stay competitive,” said Ana Li, Director of Outreach and Member Service at SEMI. “Advances in cloud computing, data processing, and system integration technologies will be key to driving the broad adoption of smart manufacturing.”
To help semiconductor manufacturing companies navigate the digital transformation, SEMI recently held the AI and Smart Manufacturing Forum, a gathering of industry professionals from Microsoft, Stark Technology, Advantech, ISCOM, and Tectura to examine technology trends and smart manufacturing opportunities and challenges. The nearly 100 guests at the forum also included industry veterans from TSMC, ASE, Siliconware, Micron, and AUO. Following are key takeaways from the forum:
1) Smart manufacturing is the key for digital transformation
Industry 4.0 is all about using automation to better understand customer needs and help drive efficiency improvements that enable better strategic manufacturing decisions. For electronics manufacturers, thriving in the digital transformation should begin with research and development focused on optimizing processes, developing innovative business models, and analyzing data in ways that support their customers’ business values and objectives. Digitization is also crucial for manufacturers to target the right client base, increase productivity, optimize operations and create new revenue opportunities.
2) Powerful data analysis capabilities will enable manufacturing digitalization
As product development focuses more on smaller production volumes, companies need a powerful data analysis software to accelerate decision-making and problem-solving processes, enhance integration across different types of equipment, and improve management efficiency across enterprise resources including business operations, marketing, and customer service.
3) The digital transformation will fuel revenue growth
Connectivity and data analysis, the two essential concepts of smart manufacturing, are not only essential for companies to improve facility management efficiency and production line planning but also key for maintaining healthy revenue growth.
“With our more than 130 semiconductor manufacturers and long fab history, Taiwan is in a strong position to help the industry evolve manufacturing to support the explosion of new data-intensive technologies,” said Chen-Wei Chiang, the Senior Specialist at the Taichung City Government’s Economic Development Bureau. “We look forward to working with SEMI to help manufacturers realize the full potential of smart manufacturing.”
With the advent of new data-intensive technologies including AI and IoT, advanced manufacturing processes that improve product yield rates and reduce production costs will become even more important for manufacturers to remain competitive. SEMI Taiwan will continue to assemble representatives from the industry, government, academia and research to examine critical topics in smart manufacturing. To learn more, please contact Emmy Yi, SEMI Taiwan, at
firstname.lastname@example.org or +886.3.560.1777 #205.