TSMC starts Apple A12 chip production, Samsung not far behind with its own 7nm design
The Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, which just so happens to be the world’s largest dedicated independent semiconductor foundry, has reportedly already kicked off A12 mass-manufacturing in advance of Apple’s probable release of three next-gen iPhones in the fall.
Meanwhile, Samsung actually officially announced its 7LPP (7nm Low Power Plus) solution is almost “ready for production”, aiming to reach that stage sometime in the “second half of this year”, and thus likely having to wait until 2019 to make its commercial debut on the Galaxy S10.
The in-house Exynos 9810’s sequel is obviously expected to make the move from 10 to 7nm technology, with Qualcomm facing a tough choice between Samsung and TSMC for the creation of its own 7 nanometer-based Snapdragon 855 SoC. Even if it loses that contract too after once again yielding to TSMC the exclusive rights over a hugely profitable Apple A-series chip, Samsung hopes to find new partners for Exynos distribution next year.
In the meantime, you can definitely count on a big performance improvement delivered by the A12-powered iPhone trio of September 2018 compared to last year’s A11 Bionic-based X, 8 and 8 Plus.
The A11 was of course built using a 10-nanometer node, and speaking from a user experience standpoint, the 7nm boost should bring more speed and less power consumption to the table, as processors shrink in size while gaining in efficiency.