An unnamed Samsung official claims that the company is going to produce Apple’s next generation A8 processor.
While Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company may already have started mass producing the A8 processors, one must consider the possibility that Samsung may not be completely out of the running, after all, it has been one of Apple’s major chip suppliers for many years.
This 64-bit, quadcore chip based on the 20nm process is going to power all of Apple’s 2014 mobile devices — that includes new iPhones, new iPods as well as the new iPod touch. It was rumored back in January that a deal has been struck between Apple and TSMC, soon after that we heard that the bulk of Apple’s orders would be catered to by TSMC. The reason given for this was Samsung’s yield issues with the 20nm process, this led many to believe that Apple would instead rely on the Korean juggernaut in 2015 for the 14nm A9 chips instead.
However, a new report coming in from Korea suggests that this might not be true. An unnamed Samsung official has claimed that rumors about Samsung’s yield issues are “exaggerated claims,” and that the company is ready to start producing the A8 processors. The report also claims that production will be handled by Samsung’s facility in Austin, Texas. Even if this is true, TSMC may already have a head start on Samsung. The official doesn’t say exactly when mass production is due to be kicked off.
It is also unclear how Apple is going to distribute orders between the two manufacturers. While the assumption has almost always been that Apple wants to move its business away from Samsung just because they’re adversaries in court and in the market, its possible that the company is simply diversifying its supply chain and trying not to heavily rely on just one major manufacturer.