updated 12:10 pm EST, Wed February 20, 2008
Toshiba & Sony venture
Although the companies have just finished a battle over HD formats, Toshiba and Sony have announced the creation of a new joint venture to produce semiconductors. It will begin operating in April of this year, and will actually be 60 percent owned by Toshiba, with Sony controlling the remainder. For Toshiba, this will come at the cost of a 90 billion yen ($837 million) manufacturing equipment purchase from Sony.
The focus of the venture, though not its sole purpose, will be in building components used in Sony's PlayStation 3 console. The venture will specifically manufacture the Cell processor at the heart of the PS3, along with the RSX chipset, which handles graphics. This may suggest that Sony expects increased demand for the PS3, but it could also imply that Sony wants to offload some of its own costs. What is known is that the venture will eventually switch from 65nm technology to 45nm, making the PS3 more power-efficient.