In its third year of releasing products using its Ax custom processors, Apple radically diverged from a winning "Model T" strategy of mass-producing a single chip used to power 100 million mobile devices. Instead, Apple pursued a new luxury tier iPad powered by new custom silicon.
Samsung remains a major component supplier to Apple, and the South Korean company hopes to retain that business relationship through a "strict internal firewall" dividing its handset business and components operations.
AMD announced on Wednesday that it has hired Jim Keller, who was previously a director in Apple's mobile platform architecture group where he worked on Apple's custom chips for devices like the iPhone and iPad.
The 1080p-streaming Apple TV and $399 iPad 2 use a new variant of Apple's A5 processor that may be a testbed for Samsung's 32nm High-K + Metal Gate process, which could find its way into future A-series chips powering devices like a next-generation iPhone.
As numerous reports claim Apple's new iPad is warmer than the previous generation, a new analysis has found the A5X chip in the new device runs as much as 16 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than the A5 chip in the iPad 2.
An analysis of the internals of Apple's third-generation iPad reveal some small changes to the design of the device, such as a switch to discrete DRAM devices, the addition of a heat spreader on top of the A5X chip and a possible move to a flip-chip solution.