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Friday, 5 April 2013

IQE (IQE) - Buy

IQE is a supplier of materials used in smartphones, among other devices. It develops, makes and sells the wafers that microchips sit in. There are around a dozen companies worldwide that manufacture and distribute semiconductors to system providers like Apple and Samsung. Known as the epitaxy process, the first stage is one of the most critical and demanding steps in the manufacturing chain. IQE, following the recent acquisition of Kopin Wireless, has around 60 per cent of the distribution market share. IQE produces wafers using Gallium Arsenide (GaAs), which has some superior properties to silicon, which is still widely used. Using GaAs creates a range of electronic and optoelectronic properties and makes the wafers particularly suited to products which convert light and electricity back and forth such as in lasers, LEDs and detectors. Meanwhile, in the electronics domain, its compound wafers allow electrons to travel much more quickly than in silicon (up to ten times) enabling higher frequency, lower noise and more power-efficient systems.

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