Samsung reveals new South Korea chip plant to open its doors in 2017

Samsung plans to begin chip production in the first half of 2017, ahead of previous estimates.

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Samsung Electronics says its new South Korean chip plant will begin production in early 2017.

As reported by Reuters, the Suwon, South Korea-based electronics giant has announced that the new plant -- aimed at picking up the slack on sliding smartphone sales -- will begin production in the first half of 2017. The revised timeframe is earlier than previous estimates of the second half of the year.

In October last year, Samsung announced the creation of the Pyeongtaek-based plant, close to Seoul. The tech giant plans to invest a total of 15.6 trillion won ($14.7bn) in the plant, which will create "advanced" semiconductor products.

It is not yet known what types of chips Samsung will be developing, whether logic or memory-based, but reports suggest DRAM chips may be on the table. Dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chips are a type of advanced memory chip used in applications requiring high-speed memories, such as mobile devices, PCs and consoles.

In a statement, the electronics giant said:

"The Pyeongtaek semiconductor plant will play a central role in solidifying leadership in the mobile and server markets, which have shown rapid growth in demand recently, and securing share in the next-generation internet of things market."

Samsung suffered poor device sales over 2014 due to stiff competition from rivals including Apple and dropping consumer interest. However, the company expects strong figures this year due to the popular Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge smartphones.

The company expects sales figures of the new flagship range to surpass analyst estimates and reach 70 million units this year -- which would put the company close to sales estimates relating to Apple's new flagship range.

Read on: In the enterprise

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