More signs that Apple is gearing up for next-gen A8 chip production

“Apple may be getting closer to production of its A8 processor as news from Asia points to Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) as the main supplier,” Brooke Crothers reports for CNET.

“Taiwan-based TechNews (via MacRumors) reported that TSMC has already started production of Apple’s next-generation A8 processor,” Crothers reports. “That report jibes with a source who CNET spoke to December. That person, who is familiar with TSMC’s plans, said that Taiwanese contract chip manufacturer had already begun making Apple’s A series processors. To date, Samsung has been the sole manufacturer of Apple’s processors.”

TechNews reports that “TSMC is the sole manufacturer of the A8 because of the success it is having with the latest 20-nanometer manufacturing process,” Crothers reports.

Read more in the full article here.

Related article:
Apple lining up A8 processor suppliers for Q2 – January 27, 2014

7 Comments

  1. However, the move does represent a move of A-series production from fabrication facilities in Texas to fabs primarily in Asia. Net loss of American jobs unless Samsung can repurpose its Austin fab.

    1. People forget that the A7 chip is not just a re-purposing of an ARM 64 bit core. Apple’s A7 is a significant variation from ARM’s core designs. Apple licenses ARM’s instruction set and a lot of ARM’s IP, but Apple designs its own cores based off that information. Apple’s A7 is unlike any other ARM based chip currently shipping or in development by any other company — even the other 64 bit ARM based chips coming out.

      Because of this, if Samsung, or any other company, copied Apple’s A7 it would be an absolutely clear copy. While the patent and copyright litigations are not as straightforward as they often should be, if anyone actually copied the A7, it would be trivial for Apple to sue them for billions. Thus no A7 copies, and thus all the others are scrambling to come out with their own chips based upon ARM’s 64 bit designs.

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