Apple and Intel are reportedly testing 3-nm semiconductors from TSMC, while Samsung Electronics, which is seeking to catch up with the Taiwanese foundry, is still investing in 5-nm production lines.
The Japanese economic paper Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported on July 2 (local time) that Apple and Intel have received next-generation semiconductor chips from TSMC, which were produced on a 3-nm line, and are conducting tests and designing them for their devices.
Therefore, chances are high that these two U.S. companies will become the customers of TSMC's first 3-nm chips.
Currently, Apple, Intel, and TSMC are making no comments on the report.
If the chip is found to perform stably, Apple's iPad will be the first device that will be loaded with 3-nm chips from TSMC. Intel is planning to load this 3-nm product into its CPUs for laptops and data center servers.
In particular, if Apple uses this chip, TSMC will be recognized again around the world for the competitiveness of its ultra-micro fabrication process technology. In addition, as TSMC has been expected to test-produce 3-nm semiconductors in the second half of 2021, Apple’s use of the chip means TSMC has succeeded in production of 3-nm semiconductors earlier than expected.
Competitor Samsung Electronics is making huge investments in a 5-nm process that is technologically one level below.