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Intel to Close Fab, Lay Off 700

Intel is closing its Hudson, Mass. fab and will lay off all 700 employees, according to the Boston Globe. Intel first acquired the Hudson fab when it acquired Digital Semiconductor (part of DEC at that time) back in 1998. At the time, Digital Semiconductor was making the amazing StrongARM chip, the fastest ARM-based microprocessor of its day, by a wide margin. After the acquisition, many of StrongARM’s designers fled to PA Semi, which was later acquired by Apple. Thus, many of the StrongARM designers presumably worked on the A6 and new A7 chip in current and upcoming iPhones.

Ironically, Intel is winding down the fab because it’s too old and too far behind Intel’s other manufacturing facilities. At the time, Digital’s fab was quite up to date and aggressive, giving StrongARM much of its punch.

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