If Sony Corp. is pulling out of plans to do 32-nanometer chip research, it's a smart move for a company plagued by financial troubles and it won't affect the industry's march toward smaller microprocessors, analysts say.
Reuters news service reported late Tuesday that Sony is withdrawing from joint research with IBM and Toshiba Corp. to develop the manufacturing technology for producing microchips with circuitry of 32 nanometers (nm) or less. The Tokyo-based entertainment and electronics company declined to comment on the report.
The news comes the week before Intel Corp. is scheduled to announce that its 45nm Penryn chip family is shipping. Late last month, Intel opened its new $3 billion manufacturing facility in Chandler, Ariz., kicking off mass production of its new 45-nanometer microprocessors.
Jim McGregor, an analyst with In-Stat, said now that 45nm technology is in production, 32nm microprocessors should only be two years away.
That two-year research commitment might have been too much for Sony, though.