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TSMC secures Apple contract for its 3 nm process chips

Apple plans to use the 3 nm chipsets for its own M-series processors and A-series chips

TSMC logo (Reuters photo)

TSMC logo (Reuters photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) has secured a deal to provide Apple with chips using its 3 nm process.

Apple is the first company to contract TSMC’s initial 3 nm production capacity to produce its own M-series processors for the next generation of Mac notebooks and iPads and for A-series processors for the iPhone, according to UDN. TSMC is currently constructing its 3 nm process fab at Tainan’s Southern Taiwan Science Park.

The Taiwanese company plans to finish certification and trial production of its 3 nm production line in 2021 and is slated to begin mass production in the second half of 2022. Once mass production starts, TSMC expects capacity will exceed 600,000 12-inch wafers annually or about 50,000 wafers per month.

TSMC will need to sell at least 300 million chips to make a profit on its 3 nm production line, UDN reported. The 3 nm process will be a full node improvement over its 5 nm process.

The company says there will be a logic density gain of up to 70 percent, an up to 15-percent performance gain, and an up to 30-percent power reduction compared to its 5 nm process. TSMC will continue to use the FinFET transistor structure for their 3 nm chips.