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Apple's M2 chip could arrive next year, built using the 4nm process node

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Apple's M2 chip could arrive next year, built using the 4nm process node
The Apple M1 chip was designed by the tech giant so that it could replace Intel processors on certain Mac models. Built by TSMC using its 5nm process node, the M1 sports a whopping 16 billion transistors compared to the 11.8 billion found inside each A14 Bionic chipset. The M1 uses ARM's architecture, similar to the A-series SoCs used on devices like the iPhone and iPad.

While a version of the M1 called the M1X will deliver extra performance to devices like the MacBook Pro 2021, Apple is reportedly working on a sequel to the M1 that will be called (hold onto your chair) the M2. The latter will be produced by TSMC using its 4nm process node. Using the lower process node should mean that the M2 will be more powerful and energy-efficient than its predecessor and according to TF International's reliable analyst Ming-Ching Kuo, it might debut on the MacBook Air in the middle of next year. 


The M1X  and the M2 could both be equipped with 10 CPU cores. The M1 carries 4 high-performance cores and 4 energy-efficient cores for a total of 8 cores. As for the GPU cores, there has been speculation that the GPU for the M1X will be equipped with as many as 32 cores. The M2 is not expected to have as many GPU cores as the M1X.

We could see the M2 released next year. Whether Apple will use it for a possible 2022 iPad Pro model is unknown at this point. The M1 chip powers the 2021 iPad Pro tablets providing users with at least one powerful reason why the iPad Pro can be their next computer. 

Back in April, there was speculation that the M2 had already started to undergo mass production and that the chip would start shipping in July. That same rumor called for Apple to use the M1 to power future iPad models.

Apple has kept its lips sealed as far as the specs for the M1X and M2 are concerned. And the new iPhone 13 series that is approximately four weeks away from getting unveiled should be powered by the A15 Bionic which will be produced by TSMC using its enhanced 5nm process node. Again, the M2 could be the first 4nm chipset used on an Apple device next year, while the iPhone 14 line should feature the A16 Bionic manufactured using the 3nm process node.

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