The margin per transistor may rise (compensating higher cost) if the power per transistor is lower. But even this scaling will be limited as well, by noise. 20 nm is already very small (anybody recall the electron mean free path?)
I attended and McGregor also said "20nm costing more will surprise market"
that is partly because Intel Marketing is talking different message
But I spoke to someone in Intel Procurement Group about why they are taping out LTE and RF mobile chips at TSMC 28nm. Intel guy said Intel's advanced internal nodes manufacturing (22 and 14nm) was not cost effective with foundry.
low cost mobile chips are going go stay at 28nm for industry and even Intel (using outside manufacturing)
100% correct. Intel's manufacturing for foundry and internal products only is viable due to cost for it's $100-1000 CPU and select high margin FPGA and ASICs.
Someday the analysis will understand Intel does not have a manufacturing advantage for cost sensitive mobile or foundry to Apple.
Take a look at wafer price projections (past and future)
Nvidia deeply unhappy with TSMC, claims 20nm essentially worthless
ASML stated just litho will be 1.7x for 20nm compared to 28nm
Implication for Intel's first 22nm Valley view (Atom SOC) will have somewhere in the neighborhood 30-40% higher cost than equal parts from Qualcomm (snapdragon) or nVidia (Tegra 4) fabricated parts in foundry 28LP or 28HPM
but bigger problem is TAM is moving to integrated apps and base band on single SOC.
Valley view not having on die integrated LTE base band makes it uninteresting to market
I look at it like this.
You can chip 28nm SOC with integrated application/base band processor now
or you can ship same transistor density chips in Intel's 22nm SOC in 2014 but only application processor
It should be clear why Intel is loosing in mobile and CEO is out.