Apple chipmaker warns that supplies may be constrained into 2022


There's a big global chip shortage right now.
Photo: Intel

Apple’s A-series chipmaker Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd (TSMC) has warned that constrained chip supply will continue for the rest of this year and into 2022.

While it didn’t specifically mention Apple, it nonetheless admitted that capacity will remain “tight” for the immediate future. TSMC is currently gearing up to manufacture the A-series chips for Apple’s next-gen iPhone, set to debut in the fall. This will reportedly begin in May.

TSMC’s comments follow similar remarks made by Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger, who said that the chip shortage will take “a couple of years” to resolve itself.

A recent report suggested that the global chip supply shortage could hurt Apple products including the iPad and the Mac. It also noted that certain components for the iPhone are “quite tight” in availability.

The chip shortage started last year with the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, during which certain factories were temporarily shuttered. It has also been caused by “changing habits fueled by the pandemic,” which has compounded the problem.

TSMC’s boss C.C. Wei said that the company was doing what it can to prepare for the future — including expanding its manufacturing premises. To this end, it has announced that it will invest $100 billion over the next three years in growing its capacity.

“We have acquired land and equipment, and started the construction of new facilities,” Wei said. “We are hiring thousands of employees and expanding our capacity at multiple sites.”

According to reports, the iPhone 13 remains on schedule for September. Wedbush analysts recently suggested the iPhone 13 could debut in the third week of September. Given Apple’s love of Tuesday keynotes, that could mean that the unveiling takes place September 14. How easy the iPhone will be to find — alongside other Apple products — remains to be seen, however.

Source: Reuters