Apple really can’t make up its mind about which company should manufacture its next-generation mobile chips. The company has been bouncing back and forth between Samsung and TSMC for months, even combining the two at one point, but Apple decided to settle with Samsung not too long ago, at least we thought. Now the company has made a “last-minute decision to recruit TSMC,” which will handle around 30% of Apple’s orders for the A9 chip that’ll power the next iPhone.
Facing poor yield rates from chipmaker GlobalFoundries, Apple has apparently made an eleventh-hour call as it solidifies its supply chain for the next-generation iPhone, opting to award nearly a third of “A9” chip orders to Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Well-connected analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities issued a note to investors on Wednesday, a copy of which was obtained by AppleInsider, revealing that Apple has apparently made what he called a “last-minute decision to recruit TSMC.” Apple is said to have called an audible after partner GlobalFoundries continued to experience poor yield rates on production of the next-generation CPU. Specifically, GlobalFoundries’ “A9” chip yield rate is said to currently be at about 30 percent yield rate, which is well below what Kuo said is a mass-production “basic requirement” of 50 percent. “Recruiting TSMC reduces supply uncertainties for Apple,” the analyst said.