The novel coronavirus pandemic came with extensive lockdowns in most countries the virus hit in the first half of 2020, which impacted various economic sectors. Some people lost their jobs, others were furloughed, and others were able to work from home. Coupled with travel bans, the lockdowns contributed to manufacturing delays that forced companies to delay product launches. That’s why the iPhone 12 series was unveiled in October last year, about a month later than expected. For the first time in iPhone launch history, Apple launched four different devices during the show. But only two of them were available in October, with the other two launching in November.
Apple won’t experience similar delays this year, indicates a new report. Sources familiar with Apple’s supply chain say that next-gen A-series chips’ production will start much earlier than anticipated, suggesting that the iPhone 13 launch could be back to the regular schedule.
A report from Digitimes seen early by MacRumors says that TSMC will begin mass shipments of the A15 chip at the end of May, with production kicking off ahead of schedule.
This isn’t enough to confirm that Apple will hold its iPhone 13 launch event in September, as was the case before the pandemic. But a previous report from well-known insider Ming-Chi Kuo said that Apple is on track to release the new iPhones in September. Kuo has made a number of accurate predictions about Apple’s unreleased devices by leveraging his contacts in the supply chain industry. Digitimes has been less accurate, but the Taiwanese blog also reports on information from Asian supply chains for various companies, Apple included.
TSMC is making all the chips that Apple needs for its devices. Last year, Apple launched the first custom ARM processor for Macs, the M1 platform that’s built on the same 5nm tech as the A14 Bionic inside the iPhone 12 and 2020 iPad Air model. Apple will likely need more and more processors in the future as it moves all its Macs to M-series chips.
The iPhone 13 processor is expected to be built on the same 5nm processor as the A14. But the A15 should bring over performance improvements and energy efficiency gains, as with every new A-series chip that preceded it.
The iPhone 13 will feature nearly the same design as the iPhone 12, and some people say the handset will be launched under the iPhone 12s moniker. The phone will come in four versions, featuring a slightly smaller notch than before. Other upgrades concern the screen, as the Pro versions will get 120Hz ProMotion displays. Some of the rear cameras will also receive various updates that will improve the iPhone’s overall photography capabilities. Battery life improvements are also expected for some models. That’s, at least, according to current rumors about the iPhone 13 generation.