Call me cynical
But I can see an increase of Chinese-manufactured semiconductors being "lost" and subsequently "disposed of" due to "manufacturing faults", "seconds" and "transport damage" in the near future.
The screw is tightening on Russian chip makers as America moves to further cut off semiconductor supplies to Vladimir Putin's regime. The US last month, in response to the bloody invasion of Ukraine, issued sanctions banning the export of, among many other things, American semiconductor technologies to Russia. Then this week …
Reminds me of the japanese manufacturing joke.
"We've completed your order for parts with a manufacturing failure rate of 10%. We've never had a customer specify how many parts they want to fail before so we're not sure how you want them delivered, for the time being we've put them all in this separate crate".
There’s a (possibly apocryphal) story about exactly that when Fender (iconic musical instrument manufacturer) first looked into having instruments produced in Japan….
The first few prototypes came through for approval and (as anyone who’s ever played a MIJ Fender will be totally unsurprised by) they were flawlessly executed to the exact spec requested. After examining the prototypes and reading glowing reports from in-house QA and Techs Fender management were very enthusiastic about the project and declared that if the Japanese contractors could meet those standards in production with a 99% acceptance rate from Fender QA the deal would go ahead and ordered a pilot batch on that basis. Sure enough a few months later the first shipment of 100 Stratocasters turned up, and on inspection 99 of them were found to be perfect and one of them had a slightly misaligned screw in the scratch plate…
 With respect to what was specified by the contract - I am absolutely not getting into an argument over the relative merits of US and offshore built guitars here!
If it turned out North Korea was using RISC-V processors for its intercontinental ballistic missiles, being located in Switzerland wouldn't be enough to not come under serious scrutiny from pretty much everyone who isn't North Korean. Doubly so when you deliberately relocated there to avoid potential government sanctions and controls in the first place.
Similarly, shouting "Open Source" at the top of your voice won't magically absolve you from responsibility if your "product" is suddenly used to support a tin pot dictator and his invasion force.
If something is "open source", it's already out there. How do you stop the "bad guys" from using it? I'm sure the "bad guys" will take careful of any new licence terms :-) Of course, sanctions may make it impossible or at least very difficult to manufacture open source hardware, but the actual open source documentation can't really be sanctioned in any meaningful way.
Maybe North Korea are using open source software in their missiles. How do you stop that? So, yes, shouting "open source" is a real defence because by it's nature, anyone can access it, good or bad.
Take any piece of technical equipment and check out where it was made. Then unscrew it and work out where the individual components were made. If there is even one piece of "high technology" that was NOT made in Asia, light a candle and have a minute of silence.
Now ask yourself WHERE the mentioned difficulties for Russia should be coming from?
Cisco has decided it's time to leave Russia and Belarus, almost four months after stopping operations in response to Russia's illegal invasion of Ukraine.
The networking giant announced it would halt operations in Russia and Belarus "for the foreseeable future" on March 3 this year.
A June 23 update suggests Cisco sees no future in either nation.
A Moscow court has fined Airbnb, Twitch, UPS, and Pinterest for not storing Russian user data locally, according to Russian regulator Roskomnadzor.
The decision was handed down by the Tagansky District Court of Moscow after the four foreign companies allegedly did not provide documents confirming that the storage and processing of Russian personal data was conducted entirely in the country.
Twitch, Pinterest and Airbnb were fined approximately $38,500 while UPS received a fine of roughly $19,200.
Russia and China have each warned the United States that the offensive cyber-ops it ran to support Ukraine were acts of aggression that invite reprisal.
The US has acknowledged it assisted Ukraine to shore up its cyber defences, conducted information operations, and took offensive actions during Russia's illegal invasion.
While many nations occasionally mention they possess offensive cyber-weapons and won't be afraid to use them, admissions they've been used are rare. US Cyber Command chief General Paul Nakasone's public remarks to that effect were therefore unusual.
The latest drone headed to Ukraine's front lines isn't getting there by air. This one powers over rough terrain, armed with a 7.62mm tank machine gun.
The GNOM (pronounced gnome), designed and built by a company called Temerland, based in Zaporizhzhia, won't be going far either. Next week it's scheduled to begin combat trials in its home city, which sits in southeastern Ukraine and has faced periods of rocket attacks and more since the beginning of the war.
Measuring just under two feet in length, a couple inches less in width (57cm L х 60cm W x 38cm H), and weighing around 110lbs (50kg), GNOM is small like its namesake. It's also designed to operate quietly, with an all-electric motor that drives its 4x4 wheels. This particular model forgoes stealth in favor of a machine gun, but Temerland said it's quiet enough to "conduct covert surveillance using a circular survey camera on a telescopic mast."
What's said to be a Ukrainian-made long-range anti-drone rifle is one of the latest weapons to emerge from Russia's ongoing invasion of its neighbor.
The Antidron KVS G-6 is manufactured by Kvertus Technology, in the western Ukraine region of Ivano-Frankivsk, whose capital of the same name has twice been subjected to Russian bombings during the war. Like other drone-dropping equipment, we're told it uses radio signals to interrupt control, remotely disabling them, and it reportedly has an impressive 3.5 km (2.17 miles) range.
"We are not damaging the drone. With communication lost, it just loses coordination and doesn't know where to go. The drone lands where it is jammed, or can be carried away by the wind because it's uncontrollable," Kvertus' director of technology Yaroslav Filimonov said. Because the downed drones are unharmed, they give Ukrainian soldiers recovering them a wealth of potential intelligence, he added.
Taiwan's GlobalWafers announced on Monday a new use for the $5 billion it first earmarked for a purchase of Germany's Siltronics: building a 300-millimeter semiconductor wafer plant in the US state of Texas.
Construction on the facility – which will eventually span 3.2 million square feet – is expected to commence later this year, with chip production commencing by 2025. The plant will sit in the city of Sherman, near the Texas-Oklahoma border, where it is slated to bring in 1,500 jobs as production climbs towards 1.2 million wafers per month.
GlobalWafers is the world's third largest producer of silicon wafers and Sherman is already home to its subsidiary, GlobiTech.
More red flags about the semiconductor market are being raised with the news that a key supplier to chipmakers such as TSMC is planning to hike prices, which will likely have a knock-on effect on chip prices.
Japan-based chemicals company Showa Denko has warned it expects to raise prices and may have to cut back some of its unprofitable product lines. The company is a major supplier of chemicals and gases that are used in the semiconductor manufacturing industry for the creation of silicon wafers and in the etching process to create chips.
In an interview with Bloomberg, Showa Denko chief financial officer Hideki Somemiya said the company had already raised prices at least a dozen times this year, citing issues such as COVID-19 lockdowns, increasing energy costs and other factors. However, he confirmed "the current market moves require us to ask twice the amount we had previously calculated."
The US government is reportedly stepping up efforts to hamper China's ability to grow its semiconductor manufacturing capabilities by pressing for a wider ban on key chipmaking gear.
Uncle Sam hopes to convince officials in the Netherlands to block Dutch-native semiconductor equipment maker ASML from selling its older deep ultraviolet lithography (DUV) systems to China, according to a Tuesday report from Bloomberg that cited unnamed sources. US and Dutch officials declined to comment on the report, as did ASML.
DUV systems use a less advanced lithography process than ASML's extreme ultraviolet light (EUV) machines that chipmakers are increasingly turning to for leading-edge components coming to the market, such as Apple's homegrown M2 silicon for Macs or Nvidia's H100 datacenter GPU.
Taiwan's state-owned energy company is looking to raise prices for industrial users, a move likely to impact chipmakers such as TSMC, which may well have a knock-on effect on the semiconductor supply chain.
According to Bloomberg, the Taiwan Power Company, which produces electricity for the island nation, has proposed increasing electricity costs by 15 percent for industrial users, the first increase in four years.
The power company has itself been hit by the rising costs of fuel, including the imported coal and natural gas it uses to generate electricity. At the same time, the country is experiencing record demand for power because of increasing industrial requirements and because of high temperatures driving the use of air conditioning, as reported by the local Taipei Times.
Microsoft has blocked the installation of Windows 10 and 11 in Russia from the company's official website, Russian state media reported on Sunday.
Users within the country confirmed that attempts to download Windows 10 resulted in a 404 error message.
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