Apple's A7 Processors to be Built by TSMC
In what seems like an ongoing effort to reduce its reliance on Samsung, Apple is reported to have shift the manufacturing of its upcoming A7 processors to Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC).
According to The Korea Times, "an executive at one of Samsung's local partners in Korea" claims that Apple is currently "sharing confidential data" of its A7 processors with TSMC. The chip maker is also said to have begun "ordering its contractors to supply equipment to produce Apple's next processors using a finer 20-nanometer level processing technology".
DigiTimes first reported in March that TSMC is the main supplier for Apple and will move the A7 chip into risk production in May-June for commercial shipments in Q1 2014. The Korea Times, however suggests that the processors are expected to be released during the first half of 2014.
Due to increasing competition and the ongoing lawsuits with Samsung, Apple has taken firm steps to reduce its reliance on the South Korean company. The Cupertino firm is also reportedly buying LCD screens from AU Optronics and LG Display for its iPad mini.
Currently, Apple uses the A6 processor for the iPhone 5 and the A6X processor for its fourth generation iPad. As such, it is likely that Apple will debut the next generation iPhone with the A6X processor or an improved variant in the months ahead.