TSMC on schedule for 3nm Apple A16 iPhone, iPad chip
Production for these new 3nm chips, which might be the A16, is expected to start in late 2022.
TSMC, Apple’s manufacturing partner, is on schedule to start producing iPhone and iPad chips using a 3nm process. The 3nm chips are to be produced by late 2022 and the company is currently working on improved 5nm processes.
Research for the 3nm production process is still ongoing and TSMC like all other chipmakers has been working on developing processes at smaller nanometer levels. According to reports, they have already started to construct production lines and related facilities for creating 3nm chips.
The work is on schedule, as per reports, and the 3nm project’s risk production is expected to kick off in 2021 followed by volume production by the second half of 2022. Going by the iPhone production schedules, this might mean that the A15 chip is expected earlier and the A16 by 2022.
TSMC is currently working on improved versions of the currently accessible 5nm chips and the company is creating more processor variants including an enhanced 5nm mode that expands on the existing 5nm Plus mode.
Apple is possibly going to use the 5nm processes to create the next generation A-series chips for the upcoming iPhone 12, which might be the A14. The production schedule for the A14 is mid 2020. It was reported in April that Apple had increased its chip order for the fourth quarter of 2020, “potentially due to an anticipated higher demand for the annual iPhone refresh”.
TSMC is also looking to move some of its chip production to the United States, in a factory in Arizona that supposedly costs $12 billion. Currently, the factory is from operational, with construction expected to start in 2021 and chip production expected to start in 2024. Whenever it does kick off, it basically means that some A-series chips will be made in the US.