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TSMC expected to begin volume production of 5nm in April

The strive for ever smaller processor nodes continues as TSMC is expected to begin volume production of 5nm A14 chips for Apple next month.

The semiconductor manufacturer TSMC is now looking to scale up its production of 5nm chips, with volume production set to start in April according to industry sources cited by the DigiTimes. TSMC’s “process capacity” is also said to be “fully booked by clients”, so clearly its 5nm chips are in high demand. Apple’s A-series chip production usually starts in April-May, so the process seems to be going according to plans.

TSMC has been Apple’s exclusive supplier of A-series chips since 2016, and TSMC has reduced the node size many times since the start of the collaboration between the two companies – from the 16nm A10 to the A14, which is expected to be 5nm. Each step down in node size benefits performance, battery life, and thermal management for devices using the chip.

All of this – of course – comes with a hefty price tag. According to Tom’s Hardware, TSMC’s 5nm process will deliver ‘a 1.84x improvement in density.’ The new technology is also expected to bring 15% higher performance using the same amount of electricity, or 30% lower power consumption with maintained performance.

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