Apple plans to be more self-reliant; wants to start producing more components in-house
Apple is apparently planning to make more of the important electronics they use, to reduce reliance on its partners. It is already making the fastest mobile chipsets in the industry, so there really is nothing stopping Apple at the moment. We do know its dependence on both Intel and Qualcomm for modems is not exactly in its best interest, being forced to throttle Qualcomm’s parts to match Intel’s inferior parts.
The most recent step forward in this direction for Apple is its very first in-house designed GPU. Previous iPhones packed Imagination Technologies’ PowerVR GPUs, but the A11 Bionic chip in the new iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X feature a new GPU developed by Apple. Apple looks set to push into designing their own modems too with Qualcomm’s modem chip engineer joining the Cupertino company earlier this year. However reports point towards the new modems not appearing any time soon.
Apple has made quite a lot of acquisitions in recent years, with mobile processor companies like P.A. Semi and Intrinsity, flash controller maker Anobit Technologies, fingerprint security company AuthenTec under its belt. They have also hired engineers from AU Optronics, Broadcom, Texas Intruments and Imagination Technologies to further their ability to be self-sufficient in manufacturing their next products.
Until Apple decides to start their own fabrication plants, their fabrication partner, TSMC, will be the one laughing to the bank with Apple pushing for more in-house designs. Apple is TSMC’s largest client since 2015, and it is expected to make up 20% of TSMC’s revenue this year.
Pokdepinion: Being able to design everything by themselves, Apple will have a huge advantage in optimizing the user experience. Not to mention the fact that they can stand to profit more with them being in control of their pricing.