Intel announced that it will spend $20 billion to build two new semiconductor factories in Ohio. The company says factories won’t start producing chips until 2025, so sadly, this news doesn’t allay our concerns about the chip shortage that’s making PC gaming so difficult right now (Intel estimates that will continue into next year) ), but this could be the start of a long-term shift in chip manufacturing. In addition to the announcement, President Biden was also talking about his administration’s efforts to ease the global semiconductor shortage by increasing U.S. production.
“It’s a game changer,” Biden said in a speech at the White House on Friday, referring repeatedly to the shortage’s huge impact on automakers (but not its impact on PC gamers, if you can believe it). Biden praised Intel’s huge investment in U.S. factories. Samsung and Micron also pledged to do the same last year.
Biden and major computing companies including Intel, AMD and Nvidia have been pushing Congress to fund the CHIPS Act, which would spend $52 billion on domestic semiconductor production. The CHIPS Act was approved in January 2021 through the National Defense Authorization Act, but the funding portion of it was not included. Now everyone is waiting for the $52 billion Innovation and Competition Act to pass the House.
Last year, Intel invested $3.5 billion to expand its New Mexico factory and another $20 billion to open two semiconductor fabrication plants (aka “fabs”) in Arizona.
Biden praised all the company’s efforts to increase U.S. chip manufacturing. As of 2020, the U.S. accounts for only about 12 percent of global manufacturing, despite accounting for 47 percent of global chip sales, he said. Both Biden and Intel want to close the gap, and hope the news will speed up the ratification of the Innovation and Competition Act. If passed, Intel CEO Patrick Gelsinger said construction of the new fab would be “bigger and faster.” New York Times.
according to time report“Having a chip factory in the U.S. does not necessarily ensure that there will be no further disruption to the supply chain,” because “Intel’s chips will still be sent to Asia for assembly, packaging and testing.”
The goal, Gelsinger told the magazine, is to eventually produce and package the chips “on American soil,” contingent on funding from the CHIPS for America Act.
The ongoing shortage has stalled many industries that use the chip, such as automobiles, medical devices and graphics cards. While PC gaming is a bit low on the priority list, at some point it’s nice to pay the right price for the best graphics card.