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Apple plans to start sourcing some of its processors from a plant in Arizona

Apple is in preparations to begin sourcing some of its chips from a plant in Arizona, according to Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman. Apple CEO Tim Cook revealed the plans in a meeting with engineering employees in Germany when he was touring Europe.

From Gurman’s report: ”We’ve already made a decision to be buying out of a plant in Arizona, and this plant in Arizona starts up in ’24, so we’ve got about two years ahead of us on that one, maybe a little less,” Cook told the employees. “And in Europe, I’m sure that we will also source from Europe as those plans become more apparent,” he said at the meeting, which included Apple services chief Eddy Cue and Deirdre O’Brien, its head of retail and human resources.

He didn’t specific the company, but it’s almost certainly TSMC, the solo supplier of Apple Silicon (M series) processors used in almost all of the company’s products. 

On Nov. 9, it was reported by The Wall Street Journal that TSMC plans to build another fabrication plant in Arizona alongside the US$12 billion factory it has already committed to in Phoenix. The article said the scale of the investment is expected to roughly match that of the $12 billion it committed to the previously announced Phoenix factory. The second plant is expected to manufacture next-generation 3nm chips, a process that Apple is rumored to be moving its custom silicon to starting with the M2 Pro or M3 chip. 

TSMC recently a “topping-out” ceremony for its first Arizona plant in July. The company is moving equipment into the site. The plant will utilize TSMC’s 5-nanometer technology for semiconductor wafer fabrication, have a 20,000 semiconductor wafer per month capacity, create over 1,600 high-tech professional jobs directly, and thousands of indirect jobs in the semiconductor ecosystem. 

Building the Arizona plants should allow TSCM to take advantage of the Chips and Science Act, which includes a historic investment to “surge production of American-made semiconductors, tackle supply chain vulnerabilities to make more goods in America, revitalize America’s scientific research and technological leadership, and strengthens America’s economic and national security at home and abroad.”

With bipartisan support, the CHIPS and Science Act was passed by lawmakers in late July, and President Joe Biden signed the bill into law in August.

The new funding is intended to help companies bring chip manufacturing back to the US and, as a result, help lower costs and prevent supply chain disruptions. The package will invest $39 billion over five years to expand domestic semiconductor manufacturing. It will provide companies incentives to build, expand and modernize US facilities and equipment.

Article provided with permission from AppleWorld.Today
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