Monday, February 08, 2010

Engineers chime in on the A4

Or, as the VentureBeat columnist wryly put it, Apple’s A4 chip: Engineers correct stupid journalist. Some of the speculation is very plausible, and I found the anonymous quotes the most interesting of all, suggesting as reason for Apple to design their own chip
  • efficiency (exactly what they need, no more)
  • business/schedule
  • cost: a big upfront development cost to slash the per-part cost

Some additional details, not quite as juicy, follow in How Apple’s A4 chip lets iPad run cooler, save battery life. I was most surprised at the claim from "a very trusted source" that PA Semi didn’t do the A4. It was the existing VLSI team. Could it be true? All other speculation I read was that this was the fruit of Apple's investment in PA Semi. (Although PA Semi was working on PowerPC designs, and the iPad's A4 is almost surely ARM-based.)

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