The percentage distribution of 2021 NAND Flash bit demand by application currently shows that client SSD accounts for 31%, enterprise SSD 20%, eMMC/UFS 41%, and NAND wafer 8%, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations. TrendForce expects NAND Flash ASP to undergo QoQ declines throughout 2021, since the number of NAND suppliers far exceeds DRAM suppliers, and the bit supply remains high. As Samsung, YMTC, SK Hynix, and Intel actively expand their NAND Flash bit output in 1Q21, the oversupply situation in the industry will become more severe, with a forecasted 6% QoQ increase in NAND Flash bit output and a 10-15% QoQ decline in NAND Flash ASP in 1Q21.
An earthquake that was 6.7 in magnitude occurred off the eastern coast of Taiwan at 9:19 p.m. on December 10. Right after the earthquake had struck, TrendForce immediately began checking the operational statuses of the semiconductor plants in Taiwan and surveying the possible damages resulting from the event. The investigation so far finds that the DRAM fabs on the island have already resumed normal operation following a brief suspension of their production lines. The DRAM fabs in Taiwan are mostly located in the northern and central parts of the island, whereas the epicenter of the earthquake was in the eastern sea of the island. After the tremor had stopped, local DRAM manufacturers temporarily suspended the operation of their production lines to inspect equipment. Currently, they have not reported any significant damages to their plant buildings and equipment. Furthermore, they have all returned to normal production. Hence, the earthquake appears to have not caused any tangible capacity losses for Taiwan’s DRAM industry. Likewise, Taiwanese foundries have not been affected by the earthquake to any meaningful degree.
As consumer market demand gradually recovers, global automobile shipment is expected to reach 83.5 million units in 2021, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations. As well, component procurement activities from major automakers and tier 1 suppliers have generated an increase in automotive semiconductor demand in 4Q20. Global automotive IC revenue is expected to reach US$18.67 billion in 2020 and $21 billion in 2021, a 12.5% increase YoY.
The DRAM market exhibits a healthier and more balanced supply/demand relationship compared with the NAND Flash market because of its oligopolistic structure, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations. The percentage distribution of DRAM supply bits by application currently shows that PC DRAM accounts for 13%, server DRAM 34%, mobile DRAM 40%, graphics DRAM 5%, and consumer DRAM (or specialty DRAM) 8%. Looking ahead to 1Q21, the DRAM market by then will have gone through an inventory adjustment period of slightly more than two quarters. Memory buyers will also be more willing to stock up because they want to reduce the risk of future price hikes. Therefore, DRAM prices on the whole will be constrained from falling further. The overall ASP of DRAM products is now forecasted to stay generally flat or slightly up for 1Q21.
Demand in the foundry market has remained strong in 4Q20, as production capacities across the industry remain fully loaded, with the tight supply of wafer capacities leading to a price hike in foundry services and subsequently driving up total quarterly industry revenue, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations. The top 10 foundries’ revenues for 4Q20 are expected to exceed US$21.7 billion, an 18% increase YoY, with TSMC, Samsung, and UMC respectively taking the top three largest market shares.