TSMC N3 process node may be postponed. Samsung’s 3nm GAA process also encounters technical problems
The industry generally believes that Apple is the priority of TSMC in terms of orders. It is rumored that not only the production capacity of the 4nm process has been given priority, but the first orders for the 3nm process have also been obtained. Although there is news that Intel has seized most of TSMC’s orders for 3nm process nodes for next-generation chips in the server and graphics fields, Apple is still TSMC’s largest customer.
The success of the M1 chip has given Apple full of confidence, hoping to accelerate the self-developed chip plan to replace Intel x86 processors, and the use of more advanced processes will help improve the performance of a new generation of self-developed chips. However, according to a report from Seeking Alpha, the production of TSMC’s N3 process node will be postponed, which means that Apple’s chip production plan using related processes will also be postponed, for example, the A-series chips of the iPhone will have to be manufactured using the previous generation process. iPhone is Apple’s most profitable product line, and its priority is higher than the chips used in other products, and the semiconductor technology used is also the most advanced.
Samsung announced in 2020 that it has overcome the key technology of the 3nm process node GAAFET all-around gate transistor process. It is expected that the new process will be officially launched in 2022, and the relevant details of the process will be introduced at the International Symposium on Integrated Circuits and Systems in March, 2022.