Rumor: Apple May Partner With Taiwan Semiconductor

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The latest generation of Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) chips may come from a new supplier and feature a radically different manufacturing process, Apple Insider reports. The publication says, per a rumor, that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (NYSE:TSM) will reportedly pick up between 60 and 70 percent of Apple’s chip manufacturing by the end of 2015.

Samsung (SSNLF.PK), the current manufacturer of Apple’s A7 line of chips, is expected to retain the remaining balance of production. This would mark a departure from the current schedule, in which Samsung, an Apple competitor, is the sole producer of the A7 line, which is widely used in devices like the iPad and iPhone.

New next year will be Apple’s latest chip line, appropriately named the A8. The A8 is expected to be found in many of the company’s flagship products, as well as potentially make an appearance in some of the company’s newer gadgets, such as a rumored Apple watch or an television. The chip could even help the iPhone maker branch out into completely uncharted territory.

One of the main differences between the A8 and the A7 lines is that the production process is believed to be quite different. While Samsung uses a 28-nanometer process, Taiwan Semiconductor has allegedly been ramping up its capacity in 20-nanometer processes, according to Apple Insider. If it turns out that this preparation is indeed looking ahead to Apple’s business orders, it could mark a drastically different mode of production for the chips.

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