) is doing everything it can to reduce its dependence on a
competitor that once provided the Mac maker with millions of
supplies. According to
, Apple has commissioned Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.
) to produce microchips for an undisclosed number of products. The
company will first manufacture the A6X processor that is featured
in the fourth-generation iPad. It is currently being produced by
Interestingly, trial production of the A6X processor is slated
to begin sometime this quarter. This is an unusual move considering
the success of the iPad Mini, which appears to be outselling the
in most regions
. The current iPad Mini uses the dual-core A5 processor. However,
if Apple is intending to increase production of the A6X this
quarter, it could be a hint that the company is planning to build
other products that use the enhanced processor.
While it is unknown what those products may be, Apple is rumored
to be building a
that can fit around the user's wrist like a watch. Mockup images
suggest that the device will be no bigger than the square iPad
In building a device that small, however, Apple would be forced
to sacrifice some or all elements of the App Store. The iPad Nano
was deemed too small to run third-party iOS apps, which is why
consumers cannot use it as a pint-sized replacement for the iPod
Touch or iPad Mini. How could the so-called iWatch be any
If Apple intends to increase sales with a new device, it will
most likely choose to build a
that greatly reduces the size of the body (such as the edges or the
thickness of the device) while maintaining the screen size and
resolution of the iPhone 4S.
Apple's A6X processor may not have anything to do with the
iPhone, however. The company might simply shift production from
Samsung to TSMC without increasing the number of chips that are
This is not the first effort Apple has made to get away from
Samsung. The iPhone maker began to switch to other suppliers
. In doing so, Apple might have caused an
for the iPhone 5.
Some critics have speculated that the shortage -- if there was
one -- may have damaged the device's initial sales figures, which
lower than analysts anticipated
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice.
All rights reserved.
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