The local press predicts things will get better for TSMC as it is upgrading its four 8-inch wafer fabrication plants in preparation for the onslaught of new wearable device market. According to IC Insights data, global semiconductor chip sales will reach US$271 billion this year, with wafer foundries accounting for about 16.4 percent of the total. IC Insights thinks the fast growth in wafer foundries' final market value is because mobile devices have eclipsed PC sales.
As a result, demand for smartphone chips and ARM processors has increased substantially and thus helped spur growth in revenues of wafer foundries. IC Insights has predicted that overall revenues of global semiconductor suppliers will increase less than 6 percent this year, but sales of pure-play foundries will post an annual gain of 14 percent.