Long-time Apple partner and supplier, TSMC, will be starting work on the construction of its new 5nm fabrication plant this week. The microchip maker currently controls most of the 7nm production in the world; and is looking to leverage its position to maintain the lead over its rivals.
The company will be holding its ground-breaking ceremony for its new plant will take place in the Southern Taiwan Science Park, and will be presided by TSMC’s soon-to-be-retired chairman, Morris Chang, says DigiTimes.
“TSMC chairman Morris Chang will preside over the upcoming ground-breaking ceremony. This will be the last ceremony of its kind to be presided over by Chang before his retirement in mid-June,” said a supposed industry insider.
As a recap, TSMC is one of the companies responsible for providing Apple with the 10nm processors that are currently used in the production of the A11 Bionic SoC, which can be found inside Apple’s iPhone X, iPhone 8, and iPhone 8 Plus. And is likely to be supplying the 7nm semiconductors for Apple’s next iPhone (or at least sharing the bulk of the work with Samsung).
TSMC expects that its new 5nm fabrication plant to begin trials run during the first quarter of 2019, which essentially means that we’ll only be seeing mass-production of the chips sometime during 2020.
Besides the 5nm fabrication plant, TSMC said it was also preparing for the construction of its 3nm fabrication plant as well, with construction of that lab set to take place in 2020.