Taiwan IC design houses keen to join MIH EV platform

Cage Chao, Taipei; Willis Ke, DIGITIMES Asia 0

More and more IC designers in Taiwan are keen to join the Foxconn-led MIH open EV platform and seek to cash in on the immense market demand for automotive chips, according to industry sources.

The platform has enlisted quite a few IC design houses as member firms, including MediaTek, Realtek Semiconductor, Sunplus Innovation Technology, Novatek Microelectronics, Himax Technologies as well as Foxconn's subsidiaries Princeton Technology and Fitipower Integrated Technology. They are likely to see automotive chips orders start to contribute revenues in 2022 at the earliest, the sources said.

Among them, MediaTek has launched an automotive chips platform dubbed Autus, bringing innovative solutions to the car industry in four major areas including telematics, in-vehicle infotainment systems, V-ADAS (vision advanced driver assistance systems), and mmWave radar systems.

Nevertheless, MediaTek has yet to join the supply chains of first-tier automakers with its automotive chips, and it will take quite some time for the company to be able to directly collaborate with them to develop advanced 5G, autonomous driving, and Inter of Vehicles (IoV) chips solutions, the sources said. But persistent automotive chips shortages are expected to help MediaTek ramp up its shipments of such chips in 2021-2022, the sources added.

Realtek's Ethernet chips and Novatek's and Himax's LCD driver ICs and TDDI chips have been well adopted by brand carmakers, and their shipments so far this year have doubled from a year earlier, with the growth momentum expected to last into 2022, the sources continued.

Many other smaller IC designers in Taiwan, lagging in making deployments in automotive applications, have no other choice but to join the MIH platform if they want to explore the booming market demand for automotive chips at a faster pace, the sources said, adding that semiconductors used in automotive applications including ADAS, IoV, autonomous driving, and EVs will grow exponentially, allowing huge business opportunities for players in all the semiconductor segments.