iPhone 14 likely won’t feature 3nm chips due to TSMC production challenges

A new report today from The Information notes that TSMC is struggling in its transition to 3nm manufacturing, meaning that Apple’s “iPhone 14” likely won’t feature 3nm chips.

iPhone 14 likely won't feature 3nm chips due to TSMC production challenges

3nm chips will allow Apple to include more powerful, less energy-hungry processors in its devices without dramatically increasing their size.

Chance Miller for 9to5Mac:

The A15 processor in the iPhone 13 is manufactured a 5nm process. TSMC is in the midst of transitioning to a 3nm manufacturing technique, but is facing challenges in doing so.

If the iPhone 14 were to feature new 3nm chips, Apple would be able to include “more powerful, less energy-hungry processors in its devices without dramatically increasing their size,” the report says. TSMC’s processor shrink, however, is not expected to happen in time for next year’s iPhone 14.

Despite these delays, TSMC is still expected to be the first to reach 3 nanometers, ahead of other chipmakers such as Intel and Qualcomm. Previous reporting had indicated that Apple could use 3nm chips in some of its 2022 products, but if today’s report pans out, that is unlikely to be the case.

MacDailyNews Take: The Information‘s paywalled report, “Apple and Its Favorite Chipmaker Get Closer”, is here.

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2 Comments

  1. What about what TMSC calls its “N4” node, which is really an enhanced version of its “N5” (basic 5 nm) node? There are distinct benefits to going to an “N4” node (higher potential clock rates and lower power being the two most significant). Apple does not have to jump to “N3” to get improvements. Jumping to N3 in 2023 is an option.

    1. I like the idea of N4 for next Fall. It gives both TMSC and Apple an opportunity to build investors without the potential N3 issues, After the battles with component suppliers building up inventory sounds great. Most Apple Fans are as unsophisticated as I am and will never be able to tell the difference between a N4 chip in their iPhone and an N3.

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