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Apple M3, A17 Chips to Use 2nd-Generation TSMC 3nm Process in Next Year's iPhone, Mac Models: Report

Apple's next-generation A17 chip may only feature on next year’s iPhone Pro models.

Apple M3, A17 Chips to Use 2nd-Generation TSMC 3nm Process in Next Year's iPhone, Mac Models: Report

Photo Credit: Apple

TSMC’s 2nd-generation 3nm process is known as N3E

Highlights
  • Apple will reportedly also use these processors in new iPad models
  • These new chips may offer improved energy efficiency
  • Apple could also use TSMC’s 3nm process for M2 Pro chips

Apple will reportedly utilise Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company's (TSMC) 2nd-generation 3nm process for its M3 and A17 chips that are said to feature in next year's Mac computers and iPhone handsets, respectively. The report suggests that these chips will enter production next year and that the Cupertino company will release these products throughout 2023. The 2nd-generation 3nm process developed by TSMC is known as N3E. This enhanced process is believed to offer improved performance and energy efficiency in comparison to the 1st-generation N3 3nm process chips.

According to a report by Nikkei Asia, Apple will use M3 and A17 chips in products next year. TSMC will reportedly begin manufacturing these chips next year using its 2nd-generation N3E 3nm process. The report claims that these new chips will be more powerful and energy efficient than the N3 3nm chips.

Apple could use TSMC's N3 3nm process for a few of its upcoming iPad models as well. The report does not mention the iPad model, which might be equipped with this chipset. The Cupertino company is reportedly gearing up to launch an iPad Pro model featuring chips manufactured using TSMC's 5nm process. This iPad Pro model is expected to enter mass production in 4Q22.

The Nikkei Asia report further suggests that Apple could feature the new A17 chips only on the iPhone Pro models that will arrive in 2023, similar to the iPhone 14 series that was launched in global markets last week.

To recall, the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max were recently launched featuring a new A16 Bionic SoC. However, the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus are equipped with last year's A15 Bionic SoC.

An earlier report suggested that Apple could be using TSMC's 3nm process for the M2 Pro chip, which could be included in the company's new lineup of 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro laptops.


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Display 6.06-inch
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Front Camera 12-megapixel
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Storage 128GB, 256GB, 512GB
OS iOS 16
Resolution 1170x2532 pixels
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Display 6.10-inch
Processor Apple A16 Bionic
Front Camera 12-megapixel
Rear Camera 48-megapixel + 12-megapixel + 12-megapixel
RAM 6GB
Storage 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB
OS iOS 16
Resolution 1179x2556 pixels
  • REVIEW
  • KEY SPECS
  • NEWS
  • Design
  • Display
  • Software
  • Performance
  • Battery Life
  • Camera
  • Value for Money
  • Good
  • Good overall performance
  • Great camera quality in daylight
  • iOS ecosystem and ease of use
  • Excellent battery life
  • Bad
  • Dated design and notch
  • Same SoC as iPhone 13 series
  • Relatively slow charging
  • Expensive
Display 6.68-inch
Processor Apple A15 Bionic
Front Camera 12-megapixel
Rear Camera 12-megapixel + 12-megapixel
Storage 128GB, 256GB, 512GB
OS iOS 16
Resolution 1284x2778 pixels
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Siddhant Chandra
Siddhant Chandra is a Senior Sub Editor at Gadgets 360. This is his first foray into the tech space, having made the switch from travel. He holds a keen interest in keeping up with the latest hardware and software developments in the gaming industry. After work, you can mostly find him playing CS:GO with his buds, where he has clocked over 3K hours. You can reach him at siddhantc@ndtv.com. More
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