The Chinese-language Economic Daily News (EDN) reports that Taiwan-based chip maker Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) will be the exclusive supplier of A11 processors for Apple’s “iPhone 8,” expected to debut in the fall of 2017. The report indicates the chip will use a 10nm FinFET process.
TSMC co-CEO Mark Liu announced at the company’s recent investors meeting that its first 10nm customer product has been produced with “satisfactory yield” and that three products had already been “taped out”.
“Taping out” refers to the process of having the initial design of a chip completed for creation of the masks that will be used to print the actual chip. TSMC is said to have begun taping out the design for the A11 processor back in May.
TSMC to Also Make A10 for iPhone 7
TSMC is the exclusive fabricator of Apple’s A10 chip, which will be the brains of the Cupertino firm’s “iPhone 7,” expected to debut in September. Apple is said to have given the exclusive contract to TSMC due to its advanced chip packaging techniques, which allow better performance and efficiency via higher-width memory buses and low-power operation.
Liu remarked that his company’s production of the A11 is expected to start generating revenues in the first quarter of 2017, and the company will see revenues “ramp steeply” through the rest of the year. Xilinx, MediaTek, and HiSilicon are reported to be the other customers that will use the company’s 10nm process technology.