The Apple A5 processor currently used in the iPad is allegedly facing overheating problems when in the tighter confines of the iPhone 5 chassis, which could lead to a quicker introduction of the 3D IC chip, to be incorporated in Apple's A6 processor.
The chips, produced by TSMC, will boost performance by almost 30 per cent and drop consumption by 50 per cent, which would bring down heat output. This factor could even lead to a delay of the iPhone 5 until the A6 is ready (with an iPhone 4S release instead), should the issue with the A5 prove insurmountable, SlashGear reports.
Apple will probably make its ordering decision depending on the yield rates of the 3D 28nm chips, since TSMC will apparently be starting production by the end of the year having already begun producing samples of the A6.
Even if the TSMC chips have been compared to Intel's "Tri-Gate" technology, there are some differences between the two: for example, Intel's 3D system, set for release around the end of 2011, uses 3D transistors, while TSMC's technology features a complex layering system, with levels communicating one with the other.
A Taiwanese report claims that the 3D chips will be produced by the end of the year. Still, there is no certainty that the overheat problems will indeed be overcome with the new technology, since no production details are available.