Apple planning to use TSMC for 60% of iPhone 6 processor production

by: Gary SimsSeptember 30, 2013

Apple Logo iPad 2 1600Now that the iPhone 5S has been released rumors are starting to surface about the iPhone 6, specifically who will make the processor for the device. It is assumed that Apple will release the iPhone 6 in 2014 and due to its bitter-sweet relationship with Samsung the Cupertino company is looking to shift some of its chip manufacturing to the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC).

Such a move has been on the cards for a long time. Back in December 2012 details started to emerge about a mysterious company going by the codename of “Azalea”. It was thought that project Azalea could be Apple’s attempt to replace Samsung as its processor manufacturer. Azalea was thought to be the codename given to TSMC, which is the world’s largest independent semiconductor manufacturer, and that the company plans to build a new plant so that it can take over processor production for Apple.

Then this summer the Wall Street Journal reported that Apple finally signed a deal with TSMC which could see the Taiwanese company start making processors for Apple during 2014. In the meantime Samsung are still making the bulk of the processors that Apple use for the iPhone and the iPad.

Samsung are generally thought to be the current manufacturer of the 64-bit A7 processor which is made using a 28-nm HKMG process, as is the Samsung Exynos Octa. It was originally suspected that the move to TSMC would give Apple access to a 28-nm process but now it seems like that TSMC will be working with Apple on the next generation of chip manufacturing technology, maybe even 20-nanometer.

According to the Korea Economic Daily a large chunk of the manufacturing for Apple’s next processor, which is assumed to be the A8 and is thought to be the processor inside the iPhone 6, will be handled by TSMC. Samsung will stil play a part and it rumored to be responsible for some 30 to 40 percent of the manufacturing.

In the world of long supply chains and contracts worth billions, the move from one supplier to another can be slow, but it seems that Apple is finally starting to move away from Samsung, however it is unknown if Apple will ever be able to fully free itself completely from Samsung due to the Korean company’s huge size and reach.

  • MasterMuffin

    “Now that the iPhone 5…” you mean 5s? Even you can’t tell the difference :)

    • dodz

      who cares, this is androidauthority lol

  • APai

    in a way its good, they will be EVEN more competitive now. samsung would like to produce something that catches their attention – new and competitive production. in the end apple is proving itself to be one corner of the industry already. samsung is in no danger of losing its sleep in the short run. given how their 5cheap turned out, apple is content to be playing their “mac” like game.

  • Q.

    I’ve been hearing this for years now.

  • ger

    yo buddy. Wrong place to write your article. IF you want to write about Apple, work for a Apple website. I for one comes here to read all about Android. I don’t care about Apple. You work for a ANDROID website, stick to your site’s true meaning. Unf’ing believable!!!!!!!!

    • John-Phillip Saayman

      I get what you mean but Samsung is mostly mentioned. And they are a top android oem

    • The reason we are covering this is because it concerns the relationship between the two biggest smartphone makers in the world: Samsung (Android) and Apple (iOS)… TSMC is in many ways just a pawn in a much larger game.

  • Jack

    Samsung will release the Samsung Galaxy S5 and that will be the best smartphone for 2014. Apple is getting behind with their iPhone releases. The iPhone 6 will have a larger screen. Wow, they are innovating.

  • Bas

    I think that TSMC is one of the best options for the new iPhone 6 from Apple. Are you sure
    that they will use is for their processor production? Seems like they are
    really competing against the new Samsung Galaxy S5, don’t they?

  • Bas

    I think that TSMC is one of the best options for the new iPhone 6 from Apple. Are you sure
    that they will use is for their processor production? Seems like they are
    really competing against the new Samsung Galaxy S5, don’t they?

  • Peter

    I’m really waiting for the newiPhone 6, probably going to be a really cool smartphone!

  • Danemaster

    Going to be as cool as the current iPhone 5S I hope?

  • Darksha

    Might even beat the iPhone 5C, any more information about the price yet?

  • Daniel

    Cant’s wait until the iPhone 6 hits the market!

  • Sanne

    What will be the price?

  • Guest

    Now that Samsung has revealed the Galaxy Note 4, I’m looking forward to the response of Apple with their iPhone 6 in size 5,5 inch. Let’s see whom will win the battle of the titans ;)