Many semiconductor makers are worried about the quarter and even in 2019 due to the intensifying US-China trade war, weakening of crypto mining demand and Apple sales drying up, TSMC is in clover.
Its 7nm foundry orders have been increasing, and it sees the mounting ratio of revenues from the advanced process, TSMC is likely to see its fourth quarter 2018 revenues hit a new quarterly high.
TSMC expects to complete over 100 tape-outs for 7nm and 7nm EUV processes in 2019, up from 50 in 2018, to fulfill orders from major chipmakers including HiSilicon, Qualcomm, AMD, Nvidia and Xilinx next year. This means that it can shrug off a lot of the losses from cancelled Apple orders.
The foundry giant has recently issued optimistic forecasts about 7nm foundry revenue prospects for the next few years, with annual revenues from the service to grow steadily to the range of $10-12 billion.
TSMC's affiliated foundry house Vanguard International Semiconductor (VIS) is more optimistic than most others over the fourth quarter thanks to robust demand for driver ICs for 2K and 4K large-size TVs and for discrete power devices and power management ICs.