Intel and Apple first customers of TSMC 3nm node?

Posted on Friday, July 02 2021 @ 12:54 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
Despite Intel doubling down on manufacturing under the leadership of new CEO Pat Gelsinger, it seems the chip giant will still need to rely on third parties for quite some time. Nikkei Asia claims Apple and Intel are the first customers of TSMC's 3nm process technology. The Taiwanese foundry is reportedly working with Apple and Intel to fine-tune production. Volume production of TSMC's 3nm node is expected to happen in the second half of 2022.

For laptop and server CPUs

TSMC's next-generation node promises 10 to 15 percent higher performance than 5nm at the same energy consumption, or 25 to 30 percent lower power consumption at the same performance level. It's believed the Apple iPad will be the first device with a 3nm processor. The next iPhones, which are set for a 2022 release, will reportedly use TSMC's 4nm node. According to the report, Intel will use TSMC's N3 node for laptop and server processors. There is no word about the desktop market. The site's sources claim Intel has booked more volume for these two products than Apple has for its 3nm iPad SoC.

Intel has been struggling with process technology for many years. The x86 processor maker suffered multi-year setbacks on getting its 10nm node production-ready and hit similar stumbling blocks in getting 7nm ready. As things stand now, Intel doesn't expect its 7nm process node will be ready for volume production until around 2023. Earlier this week, Intel saw itself forced to delay its 10nm Sapphire Rapids Xeon processors until 2022.

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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