In the second half of 2022, it appears that TSMC is back on track and plans to start mass production of chips using the 3nm process path. There is also the advantage that the Apple A16 Bionic chipset will build with 3nm process although the previous issue focused on using 4nm process for component as a result. The number of transistors in each chip that perform operation and power is different.
Intel’s top execs are meeting with TSMC to pull some 3nm power away from Apple without a fight
According to Digitimes (via AppleInsider), Intel is planning on a payment to TSMC soon, not just to give them a holiday greeting. Intel is one of the major customers of the home base (including Apple, AMD, NVIDIA, MediaTek, and Qualcomm) and they want to ensure that TSMC will be strong enough to make 3nm chips in the amount required by Intel.
Intel is not a useless company like Apple is, for example. That means that while Apple designed its own chips, it did not have the materials and manufacturing equipment to make them. While Intel did have its own platform, it could not produce cutting-edge chips as TSMC could. In March there was a report that TSMC was preparing to give Intel power at 4nm during testing at 5nm.
A new report by Digitimes says top Intel executives plan to travel to Taiwan later this month to meet with TSMC. On the machine is the 3nm power that Intel needs. While the American giant may have to extract some of its production through TSMC, it has also expressed a desire to upgrade its production capacity.
The meeting was convened so that Intel could “avoid a fight with Apple.” Reportedly, Apple has already entered into an agreement with TSMC for all the first 3nm production capacity of the latter. This means that most likely Intel will not have access to 3nm TSMC power until early 2023.
Assuming there is a speed on the part of Intel (their executives did not fly to Taiwan for vacation), it would be interesting to see if Intel’s meeting with TSMC is feasible. TSMC is the largest independent firm in the world and last year generated revenue of $ 45.51 billion which generated a total profit of $ 17.60 billion. The company is valued at $ 565 billion.
Now that Apple has created its own high-performance chips for Mac replacing Intel processors, the company relies on TSMC even more. The Apple M1 has 16 billion transistors which is one billion more than the number seen in the A15 Bionic. The latter is used on the iPhone 13 series.
All the way to TSMC
Earlier this year, Apple introduced the M1 Pro, a 5nm processor that features 33.7 billion transistors, and a 5nm M1 Max with 57 billion transistors. Both are manufactured by TSMC. It is also rumored that Apple will replace the 5G Qualcomm Chip modem with one that will design itself.
The new 5G modem cable will be built by TSMC using your 4nm processor, and should start in the 2023 iPhone 15 series. While Apple undoubtedly feels like it doesn’t have to worry about getting enough chips in the future, it may not plan how all the way led to TSMC. And late yesterday we passed a report from Fox News which noted how some experts feared that China might look to bring Taiwan back to create a united China.
In such a scenario, the Kannada Communist Party (CCP) could create some international chaos by taking control of TSMC. China itself has seen the need to increase chip production on the mainland. While the U.S. has also come to this conclusion on its own, it is trying to increase U.S. production by having TSMC build a base in Arizona that could eventually grow into a major manufacturing facility.