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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:26 PM   #1
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iPad Mini Confirmed to Run 32-Nanometer A5 Chip from Samsung




While iFixit was busy tearing down the iPad mini earlier today, Chipworks was taking a closer look at the chips included in the device. The item of most interest is of course the A5 system-on-a-chip, and Chipworks has unsurprisingly confirmed that the iPad mini uses a chip manufactured by Samsung on a 32-nanometer process.

The A5 originally appeared based on a 45-nanometer process, but Apple quietly shifted to a smaller and more efficient 32-nanometer process earlier this year with the launch of the revised iPad 2 and the third-generation Apple TV back in April. The same chip made its way into the fifth-generation iPod touch last month, so it should not be a surprise that the A5 used in the iPad mini is the same part.
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Remember the past, when Apple launched the Apple A5X to great fanfare? When the A5X launched, Apple also snuck in a change to the process generation in their A5 chip by putting a new 32 nm version inside the iPad2 and Apple TV3. Apple (likely) plays it this way because they don't want people evaluating their products based on "commodity" technical specifications, but based on the overall experience with the device.

Because of this past behavior, there has been some speculation on the web as to whether they would do the same thing with the latest generation of Apple A5 processor. A new process for a new product. Maybe even a new foundry partner?

The answer is no.
Cross-sections of the A5 chip from the iPad mini appear identical to those from other recent A5 chips, indicating that Samsung is indeed still the supplier for the main chip used in Apple's iOS devices. Apple's has been rumored to be trying to move chip production to TSMC, but the process has been a slow one as Apple seeks to strike a deal and ensure that technical considerations will not hinder the shift.

Article Link: iPad Mini Confirmed to Run 32-Nanometer A5 Chip from Samsung
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:28 PM   #2
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Sweet. Cant wait to see the A6X internals.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:28 PM   #3
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Seems reasonable, ipad mini doesn't require an a5x
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:32 PM   #4
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How about RAM?
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:33 PM   #5
Pyrrhic Victory
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What.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:33 PM   #6
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Apple is gonna sue themselves
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:36 PM   #7
nick_elt
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Still would prefer an a6 with 1gig ram. I want a mini ipad, not a watered down mini ipad.

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Originally Posted by DaDalle View Post
How about RAM?
512mb only
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:36 PM   #8
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Isn't it crazy that Apple is still working with Samsung??

The answer is yes.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:39 PM   #9
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I would've preferred if it had an A6, and a better GPU with a retina screen. Heck, I don't even care if it was physically bigger with a larger display...

... oh wait.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:40 PM   #10
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You have to wonder how these conversations with Samsung go with the elephant in the room.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:43 PM   #11
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I can't believe people are buying the mini at this price point. It's already obsolete. I give it 3 months and we're going to start seeing people talk about how there mini is so sluggish.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:44 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by D.T. View Post
I would've preferred if it had an A6, and a better GPU with a retina screen. Heck, I don't even care if it was physically bigger with a larger display...

... oh wait.
Retina screen would have been nice but I don't understand why people get so hung up on specs! Essentially it's an iPad not a MacBook Pro, it's not like we're running CS6 on it or something. The A5 runs the iPad perfectly well...don't see the issue myself.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:45 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by D.T. View Post
I would've preferred if it had an A6, and a better GPU with a retina screen. Heck, I don't even care if it was physically bigger with a larger display...

... oh wait.
Comment winner.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:47 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by bboucher790 View Post
Comment winner.
For what, most pointless comment of the thread?
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:42 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Junipr View Post
Isn't it crazy that Apple is still working with Samsung??

The answer is yes.
Changing suppliers for complicated components takes time. They must give time to TSMC to get their affairs in order too.

Rest assured that Samsung won't manufacturing for Apple for long. They just kill any chance of future business with Apple.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 06:57 PM   #16
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Apple Designs & Engineers the A Series chips...

But Samsung Manufactures them to Apple's specifications.

But, Apple is coordinating with other manufacturers currently & will soon dump Samsung altogether...



Quote:
Originally Posted by Junipr View Post
Isn't it crazy that Apple is still working with Samsung??

The answer is yes.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:43 PM   #17
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apple really needs Samsung's expertise. For all the bitching and moaning by some that they would never buy a Samsung product, because Samsung is some sort of evil incarnate of a company, and for all the prognostications that Apple will drop Samsung and somehow leave them high and dry, it seems that Apple needs Samsung. Without Samsung, Apple would be in big trouble.

Nobody has the expertise of Samsung. Nobody compares.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:53 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by iGrip View Post
apple really needs Samsung's expertise. For all the bitching and moaning by some that they would never buy a Samsung product, because Samsung is some sort of evil incarnate of a company, and for all the prognostications that Apple will drop Samsung and somehow leave them high and dry, it seems that Apple needs Samsung. Without Samsung, Apple would be in big trouble.

Nobody has the expertise of Samsung. Nobody compares.
Maybe because Samsung is so big, the divisions are treated like separate, autonmous companies, with the name just being coincidental. I've read this of course, but its a bit hard to visualize.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 03:10 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by iGrip View Post
apple really needs Samsung's expertise. For all the bitching and moaning by some that they would never buy a Samsung product, because Samsung is some sort of evil incarnate of a company,
Ha. So you acknowledge Samsung isn't exactly a saint - actually they are a pretty corrupt bunch.

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and for all the prognostications that Apple will drop Samsung and somehow leave them high and dry, it seems that Apple needs Samsung. Without Samsung, Apple would be in big trouble.
For now. No worries, the transition away from Samsung will be complete sooner or later.

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Nobody has the expertise of Samsung. Nobody compares.
LOL. Tell that to TSMC and Digital Foundries. You are really over-estimating Samsung here.

Last edited by Prallethrin; Nov 1, 2012 at 03:20 PM.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 05:45 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Escape123 View Post
So is the US court system, it seems.



LOL... You obviously don't understand how much Apple desperately needs Samsung.
/sigh I'm probably wasting my time. Since I got a feeling nothing I say will convince you.

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The poor quality retina display on the macbook pro is testament to LG's pathetic engineering talent.
**** happens.

I had a GS1 phone that had a dead pixel after 3 days of use. Testament to Samsung's pathetic engineering talent AMIRITE?

Also LG is the provider of the iPhone 4/4S retina screens, back when no one could do that level of pixel density, and currently manufacturing the iPhone 5's display along with Sharp and Japan Display Inc. Pathetic? I don't think so.

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Yeah, I'm sure Apple picked Samsung's screens on the ipad mini as a way to "transition away from them sooner or later," LOL...
"The report claims that Samsung shipped approximately 15 million LCD panels to Apple in the first half of 2012, with the pace falling to 3 million panels in the third quarter and expected to drop to 1.5 million in the fourth quarter as Apple has shifted to other suppliers."

- http://www.macrumors.com/2012/10/22/...apple-in-2013/

Apple is dumping them. Slowly, but surely.

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And you're apparently underestimating Samsung. Both those companies are mini Samsungs that are incapable of providing high quality products in vast numbers as Samsung does.
TSMC and Digital Foundries are the largest producers of semiconductor chips in the world - No. 1 and No. 2 respectively.

Samsung may be big as a whole, but their semiconductor business can no way be compared with TSMC's.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 08:01 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Prallethrin View Post
I had a GS1 phone that had a dead pixel after 3 days of use. Testament to Samsung's pathetic engineering talent AMIRITE?
.
lol yeah ok, you owned a GS1 sure i believe you, ive had my GNEX for 1 year now, not a single dead pixel, rarely have to reboot, pretty pathetic hey?



Edit: standard bb resize code [img=xx,xx] isnt working, hmmm
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 08:16 PM   #22
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For those of you who don't read the fine print on the articles that get published here, Samsung, nor Apple dropped anyone. They couldn't come to terms on price because Samsung needed to get more margins to offset the USD currency crash (evidenced by a doubling of prices for food, fuel, metals) by D-FEDGOV deficit spending, and to cover the increased labor costs in Asia (^15% annually). Apple tried to compress those costs and they came to an impasse.

Apple also is tightly controlling costs on their remaining suppliers who are lucky if they have 10% margins.

I think Samsung is an evil, unethical copycat, and is good at it, but they are also at the same time, a world class quality manufacturer with massive capacity.

They are the ones starting the war based on specs and price, not winning the war based on overall device capability and value.

When consumers pick sides in that war they are funding their "team". Choose wisely not blindly.

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Old Nov 1, 2012, 08:50 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Prallethrin View Post
TSMC and Digital Foundries are the largest producers of semiconductor chips in the world - No. 1 and No. 2 respectively.

Samsung may be big as a whole, but their semiconductor business can no way be compared with TSMC's.
It's named GlobalFoundries, not Digital Foundries.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 06:17 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Escape123 View Post
Yup, and that's why Apple went to Samsung AGAIN! bwahahahahah
Err ... what's your point. I will just pointing out occasion manufacturing defects doesn't mean a manufacturer like LG has "pathetic engineering talent" because then by your line of argument it would mean Samsung has "pathetic engineering talent" too.

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What do you mean no one could? The reason why no other phone had that level of pixel density was because the iPhone 4S had a puny 3.5" screen specifically designed for preteen girls.
Do you even know what pixel density is?

Anyway, Apple went to LG to make those retina screens. Not Samsung.

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That news was found to be a hoax. Nice try.
http://www.forbes.com/sites/parmyols...ents-to-apple/
You can't get a higher quality screen anywhere else.
The iPhone 5 has one of the highest quality screens ever.

http://www.macrumors.com/2012/09/24/...y-theyve-seen/

Samsung isn't making it.

Also my knowledge, Samsung isn't making the screens for the iPad mini. LG and AU are handling it.

http://www.macrumors.com/2012/10/15/...ay-production/

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LOLOLOLOLOL...
No, omg... no.
TSMC and Digital Foundries are #1 and #2 for semiconductor foundries. Do you know what a foundry is? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foundry

The #1 semiconductor business in the world is intel followed by Samsung.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semicon...eaders_by_year
So? Apple is just using them as a foundry. When it comes to manufacturing chips TSMC and DF can do what Samsung does, if not better. What's your point?

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What does it matter to you if Samsung bribes South Korean politicians? It doesn't affect you.
Oh ... I kind of have a sense of "right and wrong".
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 06:45 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Escape123 View Post
You see, the point is that what you encountered wasn't wide-spread as the LG retina display fiasco.
Just making a point. Oh yes, the GS1 also had major lag problems - I know I had one. That was a major fiasco. Everyone who had one was looking for lag fix on the net for it. Even now if you google "lag fix" a few GS1 links shows up. LOL

Quote:
Yup, and screen size plays a major role in it. Don't be mad you bought a toy meant for little girls.

And look where it got them with the retina macbook pro.
Against as I told you. Occasional defects doesn't mean "pathetic engineering talent". You seem to have trouble accepting that LG on-up Samsung on the iPhone 4 screens.

Quote:
That's why Apple is using Samsung again for the iPad mini.

*sigh*
http://www.chicagotribune.com/busine...,6988602.story
Looks like conflicting information.

But from your article,

Samsung has stopped supplying displays for Apple's iPhone, and does have a reduced role in the iPad panel, according to DisplaySearch. Apple is also buying fewer memory chips from Samsung for the iPhone 5, relying more on SK Hynix and Elpida Memory.

Many analysts believe Apple will also gradually phase out Samsung as the main supplier of the mobile micro-processor, essentially the brains of its mobile devices, and shift to rival supplier TSMC.


Sooner or later.

Quote:
According to IHS, The Galaxy S3's screen to superior.
http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-57...oes-iphone-5s/
From the article,

"DisplayMate president Raymond Soneira blasted the study, arguing that the color gamut test IHS conducted was based off of an old standard that has led to incorrect conclusions."

also

The difference in color gamut between the iPhone 5 and Galaxy S3 doesn't necessarily mean iPhone users will get a worse experience, IHS said, adding that better calibration, higher brightness, and superior power efficiency of the display may result in more accurate and realistic representation of image color and contrasts.
"Some user reviews indicate that colors presented on the Galaxy S3 actually can look oversaturated and unrealistic," Jakhanwal said. "While it may be interesting to compare the display specifications for the two phones, the actual front-of-screen viewing experience could diverge for different users."


Quote:
Apparently, they can't. Apple is still relying on Samsung for the A5 processor in the iPad mini.
Takes time. But we are getting there.

Quote:
So why do you buy Apple products? Aren't you helping the evil, monster that is Samsung?
Never mind that. How about those iproducts made from Chinese children? Apple isn't a saint.
That why I'm happy that Apple is phrasing out Samsung.

As for China, EVERYONE manufacturers there - even Samsung (http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/st...ng-labour.html). Apple is at least making an effort to audit them to keep them honest.

Apple ain't no saint, but they are the less of two evils.
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