Apple plans to let TSMC produce iPhone 15 series self-developed 5G basebands from 2023

According to Nikkei Asia, Apple is establishing a closer partnership with TSMC, hoping to reduce its dependence on Qualcomm, and plans to let TSMC produce iPhone 5G basebands from 2023. According to the naming rules of the iPhone series, the iPhone series in 2023 is expected to be named the iPhone 15 series.

According to the report, four people familiar with the matter said that Apple plans to use TSMC’s 4nm chip production technology to mass-produce the first 5G modem chip designed by Apple. In addition, Apple is also developing its own RF and millimeter wave components. As a supplement to the modem. Two people familiar with the matter said that Apple is also developing its own power management chip for modems.

The report also said that Apple and TSMC are currently using TSMC's 5nm process to trial production of Apple's modems, but they will switch to more advanced 4nm technology for mass production. TSMC’s goal is to use 4-nanometer technology to produce A-series chips in the iPhone series in 2022, and the A-series chips in the iPad in 2022 and iPhone in 2023 will use 3-nanometer technology.

Recently, Qualcomm’s Chief Financial Officer Akash Palkhiwala said that only 20% of Apple’s iPhone models shipped in 2023 will use Qualcomm’s 5G modems, suggesting that Apple will soon mass-produce self-developed baseband chips. In May of this year, Tianfeng International analyst Guo Mingchi said that Apple's own 5G baseband chip may make its debut in the 2023 iPhone model, which is also in line with Nikkei's report.

Apple still uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X60 5G modem in the iPhone 13 series. According to previous market statistics, Qualcomm’s global smartphone SoC market share is squeezed by MediaTek, but it still holds 5G modems. In the baseband market, Apple's order is the key.

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