Pure-play foundries are offering vanilla flavor services, meaning one can buy only wafers. ASIC design, testing, packaging and supply chain services are not part of their service offering.
Large IDM players, who manage their own supply chain, seek this type of engagement because they prefer to own the supply chain in order to get better control over price and quality. IDMs usually buy untested-wafers and use different assembly houses to perform both assembly and test. They manage the entire supply chain internally.
However, if you belong to a smaller company, or a system house, you may not want to deal with supply chain issues and prefer to focus on your core competencies rather than deal with manufacturing challenges. Which means, you’ll be looking for a subcontractor to run and manage your entire ASIC supply chain.
Both TSMC and GLOBALFOUNDRIES are engaged with several official partners to offer supply chain services. These subcontractors offer different services which are translated to different value proposition. It’s up to you to select the right ecosystem for your ASIC project.
So, if you wish to buy a full turnkey solution based on one of the top two pure-play foundries you may want to contact one of their authorized partner which is focused on providing full turnkey services — delivering good-tested ICs.
In this post I will focus on the two big fabs: TSMC and GLOBALFOUNDRIES.