Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd, the company that has been supplying the Bionic processors that go into the iPhones and iPad, is currently making the A14 processors.
These will be fitted in the iPhone 12 models to be announced this fall. It is fairly known among the trade circles that Apple Inc does its product planning years in advance. It, therefore, comes as no surprise when reports emerge of the Taiwanese chipset major TSMC gearing itself to make the A16 chipsets by 2022.
In terms of the technology, the A14 chipsets will be built on the 5nm (nanometer) technology. The A16 chipsets will be built on the 3nm platform, as per reports.
Processors Being Constantly Upgraded
Almost all big players in the chips business, Qualcomm, Intel and TSMC, keep coming up with better processors each year. The technological improvements they bring about ensure the devices they are fitted to deliver better performance while consuming less power. This has meant better battery life. The designers of smartphones and other devices keep looking for such improvements.
When they keep adding more cameras and larger sized snappers, the processors should be able to handle them. Apple does not believe in fitting large-sized cameras on its iPhones. However, the iPhones still deliver better photography than their Android competitors, much largely due to better processors and software.
TSMC’s Plans to Setup A Manufacturing Unit in the US
Apple’s Taiwanese chipset vendor has plans to set up a unit in Arizona, United States, to build chipsets. The $12 billion project is said to be still in its nascent stages with construction expected to commence only in 2021. Sources indicate that there are some issues yet to be sorted out before the project gets underway. One of them is the subsidy and concessions the Taiwanese company is looking for from the US government.
Some lawmakers on Capital Hill are possibly not very much sold on the idea of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd being showed any preference. Their concerns stem from the security perspective. The earliest the Arizona factory may start making its chipsets on US soil could be by 2024.
A14 Chipset Production on Schedule
These reports say TSMC should now be in the process of beginning bulk production of the A14 chipsets for the iPhone 12 range and the iPads. There are indications Apple has enhanced the order quantity for supplies during the 4th quarter. The company hopes there will be a surge in the demand for iPhones after their launch in September, COVID, or no COVID.
The company will then switch to the A15 chipset manufacture and by 2022, will be ready for the A16 3nm chipsets.