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Packaging Challenges in a World Driven by the Internet of Things and Migration to the Cloud Abstract

The semiconductor industry growth was driven first by government requirements with mainframe computing as the primary platform, the second phase of growth came from desktop computers for both business and consumer applications. Today mobile consumer devices are the primary drivers of increasing transistor count. Packaging requirements change as the primary drivers of industry growth change. The relative importance of performance, power, latency, size, weight and cost are different in each application.

Historically, these changes in packaging requirements have been mostly evolutionary. Today we are at the leading edge of a revolutionary change in packaging requirements driven by the explosive growth of the Internet of Things and the migration of data, logic and applications to the cloud.

This revolution will require dramatic cost reduction measured in both money and power for computing and communications. The result will be fundamental change in the architecture of the global communications network, all of the components incorporated into that network and everything connected to it. The primary packaging challenges will migrate from performance and form factor to include physical density of bandwidth, power and latency with increased demand for reduction in cost per function. This comes as we are finally near the end of “Moore’s Law Scaling” providing a solution. Scaling CMOS no longer provides the improvement in cost, performance and power we have enjoyed for 50 years and packaging will have to “take up the slack”. 

The forces driving this revolution in packaging and potential solutions to the difficult challenges will be discussed.