Apple to Employ TSMC For Its A6X
While everyone was planning for the winter vacation last month, chip manufacturers were busy trying to win Apple’s affection and be in its good graces. Samsung was the maker behind the famous and mysterious Apple’s famous “Azalea” chip till now. Apple is planning on relieving Samsung’s duties and to move on to other companies to meet its needs.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) Limited hit the jackpot by getting the contract for the production of the newer version of the A6X – the chip in the iPad retina. Apple uses the A-series chips in its iOS devices. The previous 32nm A6, used in iPhone 5, is being remodelled to a 28nm A6X chip for the fourth generation iPad. TSMC is to start the 3-month trial production of A6X before landing the A7 contract. The A6X has been reported to be more power efficient and will also be used for 5th gen iPad and iPad mini 2.
Apple is testing the waters as handling its huge customer base and keeping up with the quality is not a small deal. TSMC refused Apples’ investment to secure exclusive access to the company’s foundries and is funding its own factories. The production is to take place on US soil. The change is expected to take place almost by the end of this quarter.
Samsung’s IP covered licensing issues around the A5 and A5X processors. Apple then switched to its own A6 and A6X designs. In order to keep the profit margin up, Samsung has to work really hard to compensate for the huge loss of iOS devices.