M3 Chip for Macs and A17 Chip for iPhone 15 Pro Will Reportedly Use TSMC’s Second-Generation 3nm Process

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Apple's future M3 chip for Macs and A17 chip for iPhone 15 Pro models will be manufactured based on TSMC's enhanced 3nm process known as N3E next year, according to a new report from Nikkei Asia. The devices are expected to launch throughout 2023.

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N3E will offer improved performance and power efficiency compared to TSMC's first-generation 3nm process known as N3, according to the report.

In the meantime, the report claims that Apple plans to use TSMC's first-generation 3nm process for some of its upcoming iPad chips. It's unclear which iPad models the report is referring to, as rumors suggest that Apple will update the iPad Pro next month with the M2 chip, which is manufactured based on TSMC's second-generation 5nm process. A new entry-level iPad with an older A14 chip is also expected later this year.

The report claims that 2023 could mark the second year in a row in which only the Pro models of the new iPhone lineup feature Apple's latest chip. Last week, Apple unveiled iPhone 14 Pro models with an A16 chip based on TSMC's 4nm process, while the standard iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus models are equipped with the previous-generation A15 chip.

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