Intel wants to take Apple's chips off of Samsung's hands, make one for the iPad
A rumor emerged during the weekend that Apple is in advanced negotiations with Intel to task it with making the chips for its iPhones and iPads. Intel undoubtedly has the technology and capacity to do those, and Apple will diversify from TSMC, which was said to replace Samsung for the AX chip production next year, but doesn't have enough yield for now.
Apparently there is the typical tit-for-tat negotiation strategy going on, with Apple threatening to switch to ARM for its computers, too, not only its tablets, while Intel had been demanding to put its own chips in the iPad, in exchange for manufacturing what Samsung does now, say sources.
We'll see how it all ends up, if true, but Apple is the one with the leverage here, so we doubt that we'll see an Intel processor in an iPad any time soon. What was interesting for us, though, is what could that tablet chip be, that Intel thinks might interest Apple to consider it in its slates.
We have the Surface Pro with Core i5 processor, which is powerful, but not exactly power-sipping, or the Z2760 Atom CPUs on tablets like the HP Envy x2, which offers ARM-like battery life, but much lower performance than the Ivy Bridge Core i5 in the Surface Pro.
Turns out that Intel might be prepping a low-power tablet chip, which would still be based on the current Ivy Bridge architecture, but consume much less energy. If the power draw is similar to what the mobile Atom pulls now, the new tablet chip from Intel might very well be suitable for the thin and light slates that ARM CPUs allow, so next year should be interesting on the mobile processor front.