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TSMC to Begin Producing Apple-Designed 5G Modems for iPhones in 2023

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Qualcomm Expecting to Supply Just 20% of 2023 iPhone Modems As Apple Prepares to Launch Its Own Chips

Apple’s main chip production partner TSMC will start producing Apple’s first internal 5G modem chips for iPhone in 2023, according to a report from Nikkei Asia. The move, which has been under development for several years and reinforced by Apple’s 2019 acquisition of the majority of Intel’s modem business, will allow Apple to switch away from Qualcomm as the provider of the key chips that support mobile connectivity.

Apple plans to use TSMC’s 4-nanometer chip production technology to mass-produce its first internal 5G modem chip, said four people familiar with the matter, adding that the iPhone maker is developing its own radio frequency and millimeter-wave components to complement the modem. . Apple is also working on its own power management chip specifically for the modem, said two people who were briefed on the matter.

The report is consistent with previous rumors that Apple is launching its own modem as part of the 2023 iPhone series, and Qualcomm revealed last week that it uses a planning assumption that it will only have a 20% share of modem production by 2023 PiPhone‌ . Qualcomm believes that Apple will use its own modem solution in most regions around the world, but will continue to rely on Qualcomm in certain markets, at least initially.

Today’s report from Nikkei says that Apple and TSMC are currently testing the production of Apple’s internal modem designs using TSMC’s 5-nanometer process, but that they will switch to the more advanced 4-nanometer technology for mass production. TSMC is already aiming to use 4-nanometer technology for the main A-Series chip in the 2022 iPhone series, with 2022 iPads and 2023 iPhones moving to 3-nanometer technology for their A-Series chips.

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