HSBC analysts predict that all Apple A10 chips will be made by TSMC

HSBC analysts predict that all Apple A10 chips will be made by TSMC
Following this year's controversy over which company produced the more powerful Apple A9 chipset, Apple will be turning to one manufacturer next year for all of its A10 production, according to analysts working for HSBC. In a report sent to clients, Steven Pelayo and Lionel Lin predict that TSMC will get an order from Apple for 100% of the tech titan's supply of next year's A10 chip. The component will find its way into the Apple iPhone 7 and Apple iPhone 7 Plus.

Back in October, benchmark tests revealed surprising differences in the performance of Samsung's A9, and the TSMC built version of the chip. TSMC's A9 seemed to run faster and offer better battery life for users of the Apple iPhone 6s and Apple iPhone 6s Plus. Apple responded by saying that the differences in battery life between the two chips was an acceptable 2% to 3% variance. After Apple's announcement, the controversy seemed to die off.

The two HSBC analysts say that Samsung accounts for 60% to 70% of the A9 chips produced this year. The duo originally expected the numbers to flip flop next year, with TSMC responsible for as much as 70% of A10 production. Now, the analysts expect TSMC to grab all of the A10 business which will result in $2.2 billion to $2.5 billion in revenue for the chip maker.

Earlier reports from other sources, including an unnamed J.P. Morgan analyst out of China, call for TSMC to earn 100% of the A10 business in 2016.

source: Barron's via GforGames



1. darkkjedii

Posts: 31324; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

And Samsung.

2. Hexa-core

Posts: 2131; Member since: Aug 11, 2015

It causes no big worries. Sammy has grabbed and secured Qualcomm in it's bag, and Qualcomm is a much bigger customer than Apple! *GO GO, SAMMY!!*

11. Iodine

Posts: 1495; Member since: Jun 19, 2014

Qualcom was forced out of TSMC by Apple, which snapped 100% of 16nm FinFet production capacity. So qualcom could stay with TSMC, 20nm process and snapdragon 810 or move to samsung instead. Btw, qualcomm may sell more, but Apple wants to buy the top shelf silicone, and doesn't hesitate to pay for it. It's VIP consumer after all.

16. Ruturaj

Posts: 1484; Member since: Oct 16, 2014

Hahahahaha, apple did ask for cheaper SOC this year.

23. AlikMalix unregistered

not cheaper SoC, cheaper charge to build... not asked - but forced...

20. darkkjedii

Posts: 31324; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Well said Iodine.

26. vincelongman

Posts: 5728; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Not necessarily AMD are also jumping ship to Samsung/GF's 14nm LPP TSMC's 16nm FF process seems to outperform Samsung's older 14nm LPE process But Qualcomm and AMD are using Samsung's newer 14nm LPP We dont know which of those processes performs the best

28. shm224

Posts: 295; Member since: Mar 19, 2015

@Iodine : Apple is a bargain hunter and that's what kept TSMC from taking Apple's business for many years.

3. Shocky unregistered

I don't understand why they keep posting this "analyst" crap.

4. Commentator

Posts: 3723; Member since: Aug 16, 2011

Because if they only posted articles about things actually 100% confirmed by companies they'd post maybe one article a day.

5. zeeBomb

Posts: 2318; Member since: Aug 14, 2014

Dual sourcing was a pretty dangerous thing for Apple to do. TSMC obvi couldn't have made all the chipsets so Samsung decided to help. Different die size, node size but same manufacturing process.

7. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

Samsung didnt decide to help, Apple knew TSMC couldn't handle the yields. It was so stupid for people to make a big deal of 2-3% difference in the first place. Obviously the chips weren't going to be exactly the same because both company's use different method for chip fabrication. But all the ignorant Apple fans just road it like a dead horse because they all hate Samsung because fact is, Samsung is the better of the 2.

14. Iodine

Posts: 1495; Member since: Jun 19, 2014

If samsung is the better one, why Apple decided to split source ? Samsung has enough chips, why Apple needed to grap all available TSMC FinFet chip as well ? Why Apple makes their best chip at TSMC only ? It would be much simpler and a lot cheaper to go just with samsung. They would need double designs, tape out's contracts, optimizing...

6. vuyonc

Posts: 1091; Member since: Feb 24, 2014

Of course this is speculation but it wouldn't be out of the blue for Apple to avoid apparent hardware fragmentation risks even with the same uArch.

8. Tizo101

Posts: 572; Member since: Jun 05, 2015

if the A10 is a dual core again, I can see it being left behind. The A9 is not much as it is.

9. Ninetysix

Posts: 2965; Member since: Oct 08, 2012

22. Nopers unregistered

The A9 being the most powerful mobile processor as of this moment in single core performance, dual core isn't necessarily a bad thing since phones at the moment don't run software that takes advantage of lots of cores and most games are handled mostly by the GPU.... all in all I can see them going tri-core with the A10 but they don't really need much more than that.

24. AlikMalix unregistered

even on dual core, A9 keeps up with octa-core in multicore tests...

10. KyleRiemen

Posts: 170; Member since: Oct 29, 2014

Samsung 14nm LPE < TSMC 16nm FinFet+ < Samsung 14nm LPP

12. Hexa-core

Posts: 2131; Member since: Aug 11, 2015

14nm LPE FTW!

13. Iodine

Posts: 1495; Member since: Jun 19, 2014

It hink it's rather true. As Apple wants to go away from samsung, the jumped on exclusive TSMC A8/A8X, but considering the volume, it probably held them back from upgrading their fabs to FinFet and so, there is not enough TSMC chips for such a gigantic launch as the iPhone 6S. So Apple made the rest of the chips at samsung. A9X which is relativelly low wolume, ultra-high end part is handled by TSMC. Bassically only last gen iPads have samsung chips. But next year, TSMC should have enough 16nm FinFet plus wafers to supply for.... the biggest iPhone launch ever, and then some iPads.

15. Taters

Posts: 6474; Member since: Jan 28, 2013

Sorry bro, the iPhone 6 is the biggest launch they will have. What makes you think the iPhone 7 will be? Lol

18. PhoneCritic

Posts: 1354; Member since: Oct 05, 2011

every year these guys say the same thing and what happens TSMC can't meet the demand and good old Samsung has to step in and save Apple by producing 70% of the SoC. well we will see. If it does happen then Samsung will have the 10nm SoC manufacturing all to its self.

19. Ajlal3

Posts: 23; Member since: Aug 03, 2012

Samsung > apple

25. AlikMalix unregistered

If apple takes away revenue from manufacturing its SoC from samsung, Samsung will have to up their prices for the devices in order to make up for lost revenue... I maybe wrong but I dont think qualcom will make as big of orders as apple has (multiplied every year over previous)...

27. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

sure, is already busy making sd820 and their own exynos, or in other word, they still busy making processor that will be used for all 2016 android flagship

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.