The LinkedIn profile of a senior manager on Apple’s chip architecture team appears to confirm Apple is developing its own ARM processors for the next generation of iPhone, according to a report in the New York Times.
While current iPhones feature a Samsung chipset according to many analysts, Apple was rumored to have acquired chipmaker PA Semiconductor in April for $300 million to engineer custom low-power chips to meet the specific needs of iPhone and iPod design. Wei-han Lien, a member of the PA Semi team who came to Apple in the deal, lists his current project as “Manage ARM CPU architecture team for iPhone” on his profile at the popular social networking site, an indication Apple will soon quit outsourcing iPhone processors.
By developing its own ARM configuration, Apple could create a processor with support for software accelerators or a graphics engine, according to former AMD chief technical officer Fred Weber. In addition, disposing of an outside chip supplier would allow Apple to maintain tighter controls on who knows what about its future products.
As one might expect, Apple declined to comment on matters related to PA Semi, which it operates as a subsidiary.