After the iPhone 6 Apple will reportedly return to Samsung with the “iPhone 7” in 2015 as the manufacturer of the Apple A series processors that power the iPhone
After the Apple vs. Samsung patent dispute in 2012, Apple reportedly tapped Samsung rival TMSC to make the processor that powers the iPhone 5S and iPhone 6, but the win is apparently short lived,
A new report from The Korea Economic Times claims Apple and Samsung will reconnect in 2015. Samsung will reportedly be the company that makes Apple A9 processors, which the article claims will appear in the iPhone 7 in 2015. The report states,
“According to industry sources on July 14, Samsung Electronics signed an agreement with Apple to supply the next-generation AP that it will produce in 2015. The AP that will be produced using 14 nano FinFET technology is mounted on Apple’s iPhone 7 to be released in the second half of 2015.”
The iPhone 5S release is expected as soon as September 2013, but the iPhone 6 release isn’t likely to arrive until 2014. The report specifically mentions the iPhone 7 name, but if Apple sticks to the iPhone naming scheme the 2015 iPhone would carry the iPhone 6S name.
Of course Apple’s naming scheme could change, but if Apple and Samsung did ink the deal as rumored, Samsung will be the one to make the brains of the new iPhone in 2015. According to the report Samsung will make the Apple A9 processor, which would place the Apple A7 processor as a iPhone 5S feature and the Apple A8 processor, or a version of it, as an iPhone 6 feature.
While most consumers don’t know who makes the processor in the iPhone, there are many interesting details in this report that could lead to more room for design changes or features. The new Apple A series processors will reportedly be more advanced, enabling new design changes and should also be more power efficient.
The Apple A6 processor found in the iPhone 5 uses is a 32nm design, and the Apple A9 processor this report mentions is a 14nm design. In short this means Samsung and Apple can make an iPhone processor that is cheaper, more efficient, more powerful, or a combination of these. In the last six years the iPhone processor dropped from a 90nm process to a 32nm process.
Read: iPhone 6 Rumor Roundup
We may not know that Samsung makes the new Apple A9 processor until Apple ships a device with this processor on board and it is dissected. It’s unclear if this reported partnership signals any further Samsung and Apple collaboration for the iPhone 5S, iPhone 6 and future devices.