IBM is the latest technology firm to announce plans to have 45nm chip technology available for production by 2007.
Intel and AMD have already pledged to have 45nm technology ready by 2007, while Philips, Freescale and STMicroelectronics are working together until 2007 on chip-making processes for 90nm, 65nm, 45nm and 32nm nodes.
Last week IBM signed a $200m (£109m) deal with Tokyo-based Toppan Printing to develop 45nm chips, according to online news site Computer Business Review. It reported that the research and testing will be done at IBM's US laboratories, while the final product will be manufactured at Toppan's plants in Tokyo.
Chips being developed today have a minimum distance of 65nm between transistors. By reducing the distance between transistors to 45nm, companies can produce smaller, faster and ideally less expensive chips.