Apple Orders TSMC’s 3nm Chips for iPhone 15 Pro and M3 Macs
Apple has reportedly secured all available supply 3-nanometer chips
According to reports Apple has secured all available orders for TSMC’s first-generation 3-nanometer chip. The upcoming iPhone 15 Pro and new MacBooks, Which are scheduled for launch in the second half of 2023 going to feature a 3nm chipset.
According to a report by DigiTimes which is behind their subscriber-only access, Apple has received the complete N3 Supply from TSMC of the initial phase. This was irrespective of the higher costs involved and the decline in their utilization rate for the first half of 2023 for the foundry. The Mass Production for TSMC’s 3nm process chips started in Late December, they slowly scaled up the process-making capacity and it’s expected that the monthly output will reach 45K wafers by March according to sources cited in the report.
Apple will likely adopt TSMC’s 3nm technology this year for its A17 Bionic chip to power next-generation iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max models. The 3nm technology delivers a 35% power efficiency improvement over the 4nm technology which the A16 Bionic chip is based on and used for the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max.
As always Apple likes being the first mover, the last iPhones were the first smartphones to feature chips built on the 4nm process. Apple will again use the same strategy to be first to market by launching models based on the latest semiconductor technology.
Ross Young, a DSCC analyst, reported that the production of the 15.5-inch MacBook Air panel has commenced this month, indicating the potential release of the 15-inch MacBook Air in the spring of 2023. Ross Young did not reveal any further information about the new MacBook Air model, such as whether it would feature the M2 chip or the upcoming 3nm-based M3 chip.
Ming-Chi Kuo, another analyst, claims that the 15-inch MacBook will be available in two configurations: M2 and M2 Pro, while the 13-inch MacBook Air will only offer the M2 chip.
The 3nm technology will offer improved performance and better power efficiency compared to the current 5-nanometer chips used in Apple’s current high-end Mac mini and the M2 Pro and M2 Max used in 14 and 16-inch MacBook Pro models.
TSMC is to move to N3E, which is an enhanced version of N3 and it is to be commercially produced in the second half of this year. Apple will be the first customer to adopt the process. A report by Nikkei Asia suggests that Apple could adopt N3E for devices launching this year.
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