Apple's A12 Bionic is the first 7-nanometer smartphone chip

It's the first to ship, at least.

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Nick Summers
September 12, 2018 1:55 PM
In this article: apple, gadgetry, gadgets, gear, iphone2018, mobile
Apple's A12 Bionic is the first 7-nanometer smartphone chip

Apple's new iPhones come with a fresh chip called the A12 Bionic. The company says it's the industry's first 7-nanometer chip and contains 6.9 billion transistors. That statement is true, to an extent: It's the first chip that will be commercially available to the public. Last month, Huawei also announced a 7-nanometer chip called the Kirin 980. It will debut in the company's Mate 20 flagship and sub-brand Honor's Magic 2 sometime in the future. Both Apple and Huawei worked with the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) to develop their high-powered silicon, which is why the phones are debuting so close to each other.

Gallery: Apple A12 Bionic | 6 Photos


Inside the A12 Bionic is a six-core CPU, composed of two performance cores and four efficiency cores. The two performance cores are supposed to be 15 percent faster and 40 percent more power efficient than their equivalent in the A11 Bionic. The efficiency cores, meanwhile, consume 50 percent less power than Apple's previous chip. While its predecessor had a two-core Neural Engine, the new A12 will ship with an eight-core version that's capable of crunching five trillion operations every second. In practice, this should mean additional processing power for intensive tasks and apps.

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