A9 chipmaker records highest earnings in its 29-year history

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armchipapple
There's money in chips.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), a.k.a. the world’s largest contract chip maker and one of Apple’s two suppliers for the present-gen A9 chip, has announced that its 2015 earnings were the highest in its 29-year history.

Contrasting with reports of developers said to be suffering the effects of weakened Apple orders, TSMC has thrived on the back of the iPhone 6 and 6s — with $9.15 billion in net profits this year alone, representing a 16.2 percent annual increase.

The 4-inch iPhone 6c: Coming in time for Valentine’s Day?

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An iPhone 6c concept.
An iPhone 6c concept.
Photo: iPhonesoft

There are many who claim that the iPhone 5c, Apple’s plastic-backed “budget” iPhone, was a disappointment, especially compared to the sales of iPhone 6/6s/Plus. Yet rumors continue to circulate that the iPhone 6c will be released next year.

Here’s another rumor to throw on that fire: Supply chain sources within Foxconn are allegedly saying the iPhone 6c is on track for a February 2016 debut.

Apple not predicting the iPad Pro to be a big holiday seller

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Animators are raving about the iPad Pro.
The iPad Pro may be hard to find early on.
Photo: Apple

Apple hopes the iPad Pro will reinvigorate slumping tablet sales, but the company’s not showing much faith in the device, if initial orders are to be believed.

According to supply chain sources, Apple is taking a “rather conservative attitude” toward iPad Pro, ordering just 2.5 million for the rest of 2015 — and possibly even less for the first quarter of 2016 if holiday sales prove weaker than expected.

Apple’s super-size iPad Pro could be hard to find early on

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ipad-pro
The iPad Pro is on its way. Just not in the quantities you might expect.
Photo: Apple

Tim Cook told us the iPad Pro was the “biggest news in iPad since the original iPad,” but you wouldn’t necessarily know that based on initial availability of the plus-size tablet.

Apple is reportedly experiencing panel shortages for the device, making it likely that iPad Pro shipments will come in at less than 3 million for the last three months of 2015.