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TSMC Expected to Begin 'A14' 5nm Chip Production in Second Quarter

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As expected, Apple chipmaker TSMC has secured orders for the "A14" processors to go in this year's iPhones and is expected to start manufacturing the chips in the second quarter, according to industry sources cited in a DigiTimes report.

The sources said Apple's 5G mmWave handsets to be released in 2020 are reportedly to each carry at least three AiP modules, which can also be packaged with FC_AiP (flip-chip) process in addition to InFo_AiP.
TSMC has been working hard to miniaturize its fabrication process to 5 nanometers - down from 7 nanometer fabrication seen in the A12 and A13 - with the aim of securing orders for Apple's processors in its iPhones for the fourth year running.

Previous successes in miniaturization have enabled the foundry to be Apple's exclusive supplier of A-series chips, beginning with the A10 Fusion chip in the iPhone 7/7 Plus, and continuing with the A11 Bionic chip in the iPhone 8/8 Plus and ?iPhone? X, the A12 Bionic in the iPhone XR/XS/XS Max, and the A13 Bionic in the iPhone 11 series.

Last year it announced a $25 billion investment in the new 5nm node technology in a bid to remain the exclusive supplier of the processors.

Apple is expected to release five new ?iPhone? models in 2020, including a so-called ?iPhone SE 2? with a 4.7-inch LCD display in the first half of 2020, followed by a higher-end all-OLED 5G lineup consisting of 5.4-inch, two 6.1-inch, and 6.7-inch models in the second half of the year.

Article Link: TSMC Expected to Begin 'A14' 5nm Chip Production in Second Quarter
 

jmonte2016

macrumors member
Sep 16, 2016
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I'm curious to see if Apple merges iPad OS /iOS and Mac OS in a way that you can use your phone or iPad as a Mac "Dock Mode" with the use of dongles and a monitor, although it would be a lower power mac I would imagine it would work for most users. Considering the Macbook is fanless, I don't think we're far off for ARM for Mac. Maybe 2020 is the year.
 
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EugW

macrumors G3
Jun 18, 2017
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Still curious to see towards what all this processing power will go.
Macs of course.


The last time I checked these baby mobile chips are performing as fast as those real chips :rolleyes:

What's silly is quick dismissiveness of apple's innovation
I have a 2017 iPad Pro and a 2017 MacBook.

Geekbench 5
1650: MacBook (Core m3-7Y32)
2300: iPad Pro 10.5” (A10X)
 
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Jerion

macrumors member
Mar 31, 2016
86
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Still curious to see towards what all this processing power will go.

Macs at the performance-at-any-cost end, iPhones at the "use the efficiency to improve battery life" end. iPads in in the middle, with a particular focus on beefier GPU resources as per the AxX chips of years past. The iPhone variant could also live in self-contained AR/VR gear.

An interesting line of thought in my mind is: with an A14-based chip established across the iOS and macOS lineup, the philosophical distinction between Mac and iOS (or really the PC as a whole vs iPad) only comes down to the usage model. If I can have Affinity Photo on an iPad Pro, or I can have Affinity Photo on a MacBook Air -- for the same kind of money and performance -- then it's almost six of one, half-dozen of the other, and I'd just be choosing based on the environment in which I'd want to use the tools. The Mac would make sense for the desk, and the iPad would make sense for the balcony/coffee shop/couch/beach/plane. It almost becomes a lifestyle choice.

The traditional PC idea of sitting at a prepared workspace to get "stuck in" with a project isn't going anywhere -- and macOS has monumental compatibility and flexibility benefits for really complex work. But right now the conversation is still around the guts of the machine. It really ought to be around which style of device is best for what you want to do with the machine, and once we reach full parity I think that will be more of what we see in forums and tweets.
 
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Rangertuf

macrumors newbie
May 1, 2014
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Because intel makes real chips, not baby mobile chip crap like Apple. Silly comparison.
It doesn't really matter what kind of digital chips it's about, they all use transistors. TSMC seems to be ahead of Intel technology wise. Of course both kind of chips have a different architecture, suitable for either smartphones or computers.

For reference, a silicon atom is 0.2 nanometers across which means that the thickness here is 25 silicon atoms. How much further can we go?
Moore's Law will end. What comes next? Silicon photonics? Heterogeneous vs monolithic technologies, more advanced packaging techniques? 3D chips? A total rethinking of how computers work? The future of computing looks very uncertain (however interesting) actually!
 
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maflynn

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It doesn't really matter what kind of digital chips it's about, they all use transistors. TSMC seems to be ahead of Intel technology wise. Of course both kind of chips have a different architecture, suitable for either smartphones or computers.

AMD as well they also are beyond 10nm technology

How's that for a non baby chip :p
 
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manu chao

macrumors 604
Jul 30, 2003
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5nm - wow, and Intel can't get to 10mn :oops:
There is some hope that when those 5 nm A14 chips ship in iPhones in September, Intel might also have managed to ship 10 nm chips in large quantities. Moreover, Intel and TSMC define the size of the process node differently (it depends on which part of, eg, a transitor you measure). Intel's 10 nm process is much closer to TSMC's 7 nm process than to TSMC's 10 nm process.

That still means that Intel is about one process node step behind.
 
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pweicks

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Dec 23, 2016
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What nm is Qualcomm even at with snapdragon? I’ve never heard anyone even mention 5nm before. I thought we were all still mesmerized by achieving 7nm (the “impossible”)
 
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NMBob

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Sep 18, 2007
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How can a company have such a decent naming convention for CPUs, but have a naming scheme for their consumer products that is complete garbage?
 
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cmaier

macrumors Core
Jul 25, 2007
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5nm - wow, and Intel can't get to 10mn :oops:

Can’t directly compare (Intel 10nm is about the same as TSMC 7nm), but yeah, TSMC seems to be almost a generation ahead.

Because intel makes real chips, not baby mobile chip crap like Apple. Silly comparison.
A fab is a fab. AMD uses TSMC as a fab. The same factory that makes “baby mobile chip crap” at 5nm is set to make Ryzens.

Face it - Intel is about a generation behind.
 
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Starfyre

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Nov 7, 2010
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100% faith in TSMC.
Now if only Apple can make sure the cameras are better (including adding Night Mode to the ultrawide camera).
 
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oneMadRssn

macrumors 603
Sep 8, 2011
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For scale, a single rhinovirus (one of the smallest types of virus) has a diameter of 30nm. Amazing.
[automerge]1577977403[/automerge]
Because intel makes real chips, not baby mobile chip crap like Apple. Silly comparison.
TSMC is currently manufacturing 7nm x64 chips for AMD that are eating Intel's lunch.
[automerge]1577977470[/automerge]
What nm is Qualcomm even at with snapdragon? I’ve never heard anyone even mention 5nm before. I thought we were all still mesmerized by achieving 7nm (the “impossible”)
Qualcomm doesn't fab chips.
 
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reallynotnick

macrumors 6502a
Oct 21, 2005
965
533
AMD as well they also are beyond 10nm technology

How's that for a non baby chip :p

AMD GPUs would be a better example as AMD CPUs use chiplets, assuming a "baby chip" just means how big it is measured in mm^2. (not saying that chiplets are bad, just that they are also small compared to monolithic dies)
 
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IIGS User

macrumors 6502
Feb 24, 2019
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Still curious to see towards what all this processing power will go.


Facebook tracking, Tik-Tok videos, & big boob selfies?

The amount of processing power, and the process going into the mass production of these chips is really astonishing, though. 5NM is really mind blowing. Simply considering they're mas producing it in a package rugged enough to be put in a mobile device.

Could you imagine a room full of these suckers linked up on a single machine? Homer Simpson drool...
 
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