TSMC Announces 0.25μm EmbFlash? for SOC/SLI MarketEmbedded Flash Provides Performance, Density and Power Improvements for Applications in Consumer and Communications Markets

December 21, 1999, Hsin-chu, Taiwan - Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (NYSE: TSM) today announced the introduction of its patented embedded flash technology in the 0.25-micron generation. The new 0.25-micron EmbFlash? technology is targeted for SOC (system-on-chip) and SLI (system-level-integration) products that integrate memory, logic and analog functions in a single chip.

Since 1997, TSMC has delivered EmbFlash? technology to developers in the consumer, automotive, and communications markets, primarily for applications such as microcontrollers (MCUs) and digital signal processors (DSPs). Previous generations include 0.5um and 0.35um EmbFlash? technologies. The competitive cost these EmbFlash? technologies relative to other memory options have enabled successful penetration into the MCU market, giving rise to a highly popular flash MCU design.

The new 0.25um EmbFlash? moves designers one step ahead by providing higher flash density, higher performance, lower power usage and lower cost than its predecessors. This technology is very cost-effective for SOC/SLI applications such as wireless communication, where the integration of stand-alone flash, SRAM, and analog functions is a key requirement.

The use of EmbFlash? improves product design in several ways. For example, the integration of flash on chip greatly improves the power consumption and performance. Compared to stand alone memory chips, the EmbFlash? saves at least 70% of power consumed by memory, and may much improve performance by expanding the data bus. In addition, by combining logic and memory chips into one device, system space and cost can be substantially reduced, and system development becomes easier and more reliable.

"SOC/SLI is an obvious trend in the IC industry, and our EmbFlash? has proved to be an excellent vehicle for enabling highly integrated designs," said Mike Pawlik, vice president of corporate marketing at TSMC. "Our generations of expertise in the development of this technology, coupled with our extensive support services, will enable customers to design state-of-the-art SOC/SLI products with minimal effort and expense."

TSMC's 0.25um EmbFlash? is ideal for applications requiring high-density flash - particularly, wireless data devices such as cellular phones and PDAs. TSMC provides the Flash IP (FlashIP?) and SRAM IP in support of flash densities up to 32Mb and SRAM densities up to 4Mb, thereby increasing design flexibility and accelerate time-to-market for customers' designs.

Current wireless designs - especially those in the cellular market - typically employ multi-chip module (MCM) solutions that integrate separate SRAM and flash dies in a single package. TSMC's EmbFlash? technology provides a superior alternative for cellular vendors to differentiate their products in both performance and features.

Current wireless designs - especially those in the cellular market - typically employ multi-chip module (MCM) solutions that integrate separate SRAM and flash dies in a single package. TSMC's EmbFlash? technology provides a superior alternative for cellular vendors to differentiate their products in both performance and features.

"Compared to the MCM solutions used in the cellular phone, the EmbFlash? solution can further improve the power, performance, and even cost," said Sam Chu, the director of E-NVM at TSMC. "Our FlashIP? set features combined density, configuration, and performance improvements that simply aren't available from stand-alone memory. In addition, the design and test support from TSMC enables our customers to integrate flash and SRAM with greater ease and minimum overhead."

Chu also emphasized that customers who use the EmbFlash? solution can avoid the risk of flash or SRAM supply shortages and price fluctua