A new report out of Taiwan indicates that Apple’s Asian partners have already secured orders for the A-series processors destined for the next two iPhone iterations planned for 2014 and 2015.
Sources within Apple’s supply chain are telling DigiTimes that “Samsung Electronics has signed a contract for the production of Apple's next-generation smartphone application processors to be used in 2015 using 14/16nm FinFET processes.”
The sources said that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) had been selected by Apple as the leading manufacturer of 20nm A-series chips for the “2014 iPhone series,” also referred to by the media as the iPhone 6.
The report then adds that “Sasmung will use its 14nm FinFET process to manufacture a portion of the A-series chips for Apple's 2015 iPhone series, and the remainder of the chips will be built using TSMC's 16nm FinFET technology,” citing the same knowledgeable sources.
TSMC is expected to grab the lion’s share of Apple’s chip orders, leaving only “30-40% to be taken over by Samsung,” the sources reportedly said. However, the scales might ultimately even out, the same people opined.
Reports like these usually don’t give away details as to what Apple’s next-generation iPhones will be capable of doing. However, the information dished out today by DigiTimes’ sources seems to indicate that Apple and Samsung are still in bed together, despite their various legal disputes in the smartphone wars.
Contrary to popular belief – that Apple has taken TSMC aboard to get rid of Samsung – TSMC appears to have been selected as a supplier because of its outstanding ability to churn out millions of chips when faced with a deadline.
With the dual-iPhone business model kicked off by Apple in September, it is possible that it will drop its bi-annual incremental updates, releasing a new version number every year (starting with iPhone 7 in 2015).