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How did Japanese enterprises lose to the United States in the chip war 40 years ago?

via:博客园     time:2020/5/23 13:30:18     readed:95

In the global market, fair competition may be just a beautiful yearning?

In 1945, Japan declared unconditional surrender, lost all the fruits of expansion after Meiji Restoration, and destroyed most of its industrial base.

At that time, the Soviet Union was still a world-class power, while Japan was the strategic channel for the Soviet Union to open up the Far East and the Pacific Ocean. Although the United States did not have much interest in supporting Japanese industry, in order to better contain the Soviet Union, the United States decided to strengthen its control over Japan and give Japan a lot of technical and economic support.

After the defeat, Japan did not have much choice. In the Soviet Union and the United States, Japan chose to be pro american. So the Japan US alliance was born.

William ,1947


In 1950, Shockley was still working in Bell laboratory, and the junction transistor was successfully developed.

Founder of Tung Tong Gong (SONY predecessor),1952


In 1955, the first transistor radio TR55 in Japan was made by Eastcom using transistor technology. This product is also of great significance in the history of semiconductor development in Japan.

Silicon Valley in the United States.

In the same year, the ambitious Shockley returned to his hometown, Santa Clara Valley (Silicon Valley), and founded Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory. Since then, Silicon Valley has become the semiconductor center of the United States.

Japan's high-tech industry is developing rapidly because of the demographic dividend brought by the tide of population growth and the technical support from the United States. We are familiar with Toshiba, Mitsubishi, Panasonic, Sony, NEC, sharp and other enterprises, which were established in this period.

Although the United States knows that Japan is making rapid progress in the international market, they think transistor technology is just a transitional technology, so they don't care very much, and continue to provide technical support and patent sales to Japan.


1958, Texas Instruments, USA

Robert Fairchild Semiconductor, Inc.,1960

The birth of integrated circuit technology also represents an era when American technology is ahead of Japanese technology.

From 1962 to 1963, NEC obtained the technical authorization of Xiantong semiconductor company and obtained the batch manufacturing process of integrated circuit. Under the leadership of the Japanese government, NEC also shared relevant technologies with Japanese companies such as Mitsubishi, making the Japanese chip industry officially set sail.

The cooperation between government, industry, University and Research Institute is an organizational mode in the field of major scientific and technological R & D. in this mode, research institutes and universities are responsible for technical research, and relevant enterprises are responsible for R & D and market application. Among them, the VLSI R & D project organized and implemented by Japan's Ministry of general industry is a typical representative of the construction of cooperation between government, industry, University and Research Institute.

The Japanese government knows that it is impossible to get close to, or even surpass, the U.S. if these independent companies develop themselves. As a result, the Japanese government funded 32 billion yen, enterprises raised 40 billion yuan, in conjunction with Hitachi, NEC、 Fujitsu, Mitsubishi, Toshiba five enterprises jointly set up national scientific research institutions

All the enterprises participating in the project can share all the R & D achievements, and the efficiency of Japanese enterprises has increased in a straight line.

Four years later, Japan has obtained more than 1000 technical patents, and a number of wafer factories have sprung up.


In 1980, the American Nightmare began.

In the early 1980s, Japan captured 30% of the world's DRAM memory chip market, and in the late 1980s, Japan captured 55% of the market, far surpassing American enterprises. The price of 4K DRAM memory chips has plummeted from $100 to $5, down more than 90%, due to the strategy of Japanese semiconductor enterprises that the price is always 10% lower than the other side and the oversaturated supply strategy of mass production of DRAM memory chips.

Soon, American semiconductor companies couldn't hold up.

In 1981, the profit of AMD (Advanced Micro Devices) in the United States decreased by more than 60%.

In 1986, Intel's worst year in history, with a net loss of $173 million and more than 7000 job cuts, was the only year in which Intel lost money. Without IBM's help, there might not be Intel today.

Chip making requires a lithography machine, and canon and Nikon in Japan can make their own.

As a result, Japanese semiconductor enterprises in the world has achieved TOP1 absolute advantages. Fujitsu even plans to buy an 80% stake in Sendong Semiconductor. The company is Silicon Valley

Japan was not happy for a long time, and the United States did.


Father of Silicon Valley, father of integrated circuits, founder of Sendong Semiconductor and Intel


After several years of lobbying, SIA has achieved the results of reducing the capital income tax rate from 49% to 28%, promoting the pension into the field of venture capital investment, but still has no key support from the government.

And in June 1985, SIA's decision to raise awareness of American society through public opinion was a big move we can still see today

Do you think you are familiar with it?

In the same year, the U.S. government finally made a move, and the United States opened up its own for Japan

Note that this is the first time in history

FBI US agents disguised themselves as IBM engineers fishing in 1982

In November 1981, Lin Xianzhi was appointed to the United States by Hitachi. Under Perry's matchmaking, he met

In any case, Lin Xianzhi would not think that his words and deeds are in the hands of the Americans. In order to obtain sufficient evidence, the FBI recorded and monitored every joint and conversation between Lin Xianzhi and Harrison.

On June 22,1982, Lin Xianzhi rushed to the scene with computer software expert Da Xi

On the same day, Kimura, an engineer of Mitsubishi Corporation of Japan, fell into the trap of the FBI. When he prepared to return home with a stolen IBM advanced technical data, he was caught at San Francisco International Airport.

The economic espionage incident came to light and soon made headlines in the world's leading media, known as

After the incident, Japan's computer industry was greatly damaged, Hitachi, Mitsubishi accepted the United States sent people into enterprises, business supervision.


The United States has used legal means to arrest two Toshiba semiconductor executives in Japan


US lawmakers smash Toshiba radio

At the beginning of 1986, the United States ruled that Japan's DRAM memory chips were dumping, and imposed a 100% anti-dumping duty on Japan.

At the end of 1986, Japan and the United States signed the Japan US semiconductor agreement.

Agreement 1 requires Japan to open the semiconductor market, and the market share of American semiconductor in Japan must reach more than 20%.

Agreement II, prohibit Japanese semiconductor at a low price in the United States or other markets dumping, prices need to be calculated through the United States costs to price the sale.

Third, Japan's Fujitsu is prohibited from acquiring American Xiantong semiconductor company.

In addition to this, the United States has opened a number of cases against Japan under section 1301-1310 of the Integrated Trade and Competition Act 1988

First time in America and Japan

They are: the first time to attack the economic interests of allies globally; the first time to upgrade trade disputes to the national political level on the basis of national security.

After a series of sanctions from the United States, Japan's semiconductor industry slowed down in the early 1990s, and its ranking declined. Intel, Motorola and other companies in the U.S. are growing up.

Although Japanese enterprises have been severely restricted, the advantages accumulated in the early stage are still considerable, and the United States still has not achieved the leading advantage at this time.

In the early 1990s, the company that really knocked down the Japanese semiconductor enterprises will soon be on the stage of history.

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