• Pasternack, a leading provider of RF, microwave and millimetre-wave products, has signed RF Design of Cape Town as an authorised distributor of Pasternack products in South Africa and Namibia. As an official distributor of Pasternack products, RF Design will now be able to offer its customers access to a large selection of RF, microwave and millimetre-wave products available with same-day shipping from the United States.
• Reunert’s half-year results to 31st March 2018 reflect a 10% increase in revenue, from R4421 million to R4841 million. This was primarily driven by a 25% increase in revenue from the Applied Electronics segment arising from new segment subsidiaries and a large export order book. Group operating profit declined by 8% from R616 million to R567 million, driven in large part by the stronger exchange rate of the Rand with respect to the dollar.
• MTN and Huawei recently conducted what they claimed was Africa’s first field trial of 5G mobile broadband. Built on an end-to-end Huawei 5G solution using 28 GHz millimetre-wave technology, the trial demonstrated a fixed-wireless access use case in a real-world environment in Hatfield, Pretoria. Downlink speeds of 520 Mbps and uplink speeds of 77 Mbps were achieved.
• Net sales for Microchip Technology’s fiscal year ended 31 March 2018 were $3,981 billion, an increase of 16,8% from net sales of $3,408 billion in the prior fiscal year. Net income was $255,4 million, or $1,03 per diluted share, an increase of 49,7% over the prior fiscal year. The prior year’s net income results were significantly adversely impacted by purchase accounting adjustments associated with the acquisition of Atmel, while 2018’s results were detrimentally impacted by one-time tax adjustments related to the US Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.
• XP Power has acquired the business and assets of Glassman High Voltage Inc., a US-based designer and manufacturer of high-voltage, high-power power supplies. The $44,5 million deal expands XP Power’s product offering into standard, modified and custom high-voltage, high-power conversion products. Typical applications include semiconductor manufacturing equipment, vacuum/plasma processing, analytical instrumentation, medical diagnostics and test equipment.
• TDK acquired Faraday Semi LLC, a US-based, venture-backed company engaged in the design of advanced power semiconductor ICs. Now a wholly owned subsidiary of TDK, Faraday Semi’s solutions incorporate high-performance semiconductor in advanced packaging technologies such as semiconductor embedded in substrate (SESUB), resulting in the world’s smallest class of high power density point-of-load solutions under the brand POL.
• Adesto Technologies announced its acquisition of Dublin-based S3 Semiconductors, a global supplier of mixed-signal and RF application specific integrated circuits (ASICs) and an extensive library of design IP. The transaction is valued at approximately $35 million, with an additional earn-out provision based on certain milestones to the end of calendar year 2019.
• Artificial Intelligence (AI) will see a significant shift out of the cloud and on to the edge. This will happen initially in terms of inference (machine learning) and then by training. This shift means a huge opportunity for those chipset vendors with power-efficient chipsets and other products that can meet the demand for edge AI computing. ABI Research predicts that edge AI inference will grow from just 6% in 2017 to 43% in 2023, and has identified 11 verticals ripe for the adoption of AI, including automotive, mobile devices, wearables, smart home, robotics, small unmanned aerial vehicles, smart manufacturing, smart retail, smart video, smart building, and oil and gas sectors. By 2023 the market will witness 1,2 billion shipments of devices capable of on-device AI inference – up from 79 million in 2017.
• The Wi-Fi Alliance has released a mesh networking standard to simplify the creation of Wi-Fi networks that cover larger areas. EasyMesh delivers a standards-based approach to deploying adaptable networks comprised of multiple access points from different vendors, extending uniform Wi-Fi coverage and enhancing performance throughout a larger service area than is possible with a single access point.
• According to DMASS, European semiconductor sales as reported by its members in the first quarter of 2018 ended at a record 2,28 billion Euros, 6,9% above the first quarter of 2017 and 13% above the fourth quarter of 2017. A closer look at the products breakdown reveals strong and solid growth in discretes, power discretes (MOSFETs) and sensors as well as in programmable logic – all double-digit – while opto, analog, memories and other logic (ASSPs) came in short – between 1% and 2,5%. Analog, the biggest product group, grew by 2,4% to 672 million Euros, MOS micro by 8% to 477 million Euros, power by 16,9% to 241 million Euro, opto (including LEDs) by 2,3% to 217 million Euros, memories by 2,4% to 184 million Euros and programmable logic by 13,5% to 153 million Euros.
• IC Insights has raised its expectations for 2018 semiconductor capital spending by six percentage points to a 14% increase. If this increase occurs, it would be the first time that semiconductor industry capital outlays exceeded $100 billion. The worldwide 2018 capital spending forecast figure is 53% higher than the spending just two years earlier in 2016.
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