Remember when Intel sang praises enthusiastically for a certain fruity company, having told the press recently how thrilled they’ve been because Apple has been “pushing us hard”? Intel wasn’t joking and they want the iPhone maker to make another switch. Earlier today, Intel’s finance boss told journalists at a London investor event that his company would absolutely love to build mobile processors for Apple – even if that meant agreeing to custom designs which marry Apple’s silicon blueprints to Intel’s proprietary processor architecture, Reuters reported.
There are certain customers that would be interesting to us and certain customers that wouldn’t. If Apple or Sony came to us and said ‘I want to do a product that involves your IA (Intel architecture) core and put some of my IP around it’, I wouldn’t blink. That would be fantastic business for us. Then you get into the middle ground of ‘I don’t want it to be a IA core, I want it to be my own custom designed core,’ and then you are only getting the manufacturing margin, (and) that would be a much more in-depth discussion and analysis.
Intel is probably looking at Apple’s pending legal battle with Samsung, suspecting it won’t be too long before the Mac maker jumps ship to outsource the A4/A5 production to TSMC. Such a rare moment in time would give Intel a not-to-be-missed opportunity to win the Apple chip account.
Given the Apple-Intel collaboration on high-speed Thunderbolt I/O technology and Apple’s use of Intel’s Sandy Bridge processors in 2011 iMac and MacBook Pro family, we wouldn’t be entirely surprised if Apple shopped for its mobile processors at Intel. Such a notion isn’t entirely without its merits – and we’ve heard it before. Apple could also benefit from Intel’s next-gen tri-gate transistor technology that utilizes the third dimension. It’s said to deliver a 37 percent speed increase over their 32nm planar transistors at same low power requirements. Maybe this technology is the future for the A6 chip and beyond… What’s your say, should Apple award the lucrative chip manufacturing contract to Intel or TSMC? Or maybe they’re better off with Samsung and not change their key silicon provider for the time being? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
- Intel: We have ‘full rights’ to the Thunderbolt trademark, not Apple (9to5mac.com)
- Intel building next-gen 3D chips for mobile devices (9to5mac.com)
- Intel: “Apple – they push us hard” (9to5mac.com)
- Is Intel going to build Apple’s A6 chips? (9to5mac.com)