Published: Fri, December 01, 2017
Technology | By Russell Knight

Apple Could Be Designing Its Own IPhone Power Chips By 2018

Apple Could Be Designing Its Own IPhone Power Chips By 2018

Apple is designing its own power-management chips for use in iPhones from as early as 2018, reducing its dependence on Dialog Semiconductor, Japan's Nikkei reported, without identifying its sources.

Needless to say, Dialog Semiconductor shares are down 17 percent since the news broke. One prediction suggests that Apple is going to meet nearly half of the demand for the iPhone's power management chips itself by next year.

The Nikkei business daily quoted one source saying iPhone would make about half its own power-management chips, starting next year, with another source saying this could be delayed until 2019. Additionally, these chips are one of the most crucial and expensive components after core processors, modems and memory chips respectively.

Handout iPhone SE
Apple Could Be Designing Its Own IPhone Power Chips By 2018

Dialog shares fell as much as 23 percent to 28.53 euros in Germany.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

About Apple Apple Inc (Apple) designs, manufactures and markets mobile communication and media devices, personal computers, and portable digital music players, and a variety of related software, services, peripherals, networking solutions, and third-party digital content and applications.

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There's naturally a degree of speculation here, but Apple has always been a company keen to create and control its own technology, so the industry rumours have a good chance to be more than just gossip. Today, Olson wrote that thanks to the iPhone X, Apple is in line "to experience a strong multi-year iPhone trajectory, not the short-lived "super cycle" that was anticipated".

In 2008, Apple purchased PA Semi, a Silicon Valley-based chip startup that designed high-performance, low-power microprocessors. The company designed chips for iPhones, iPads, and Apple Watches, and relied on Apple for 74 percent of its revenue previous year.

Apple told UK-based Imagination Technologies that it would stop licensing its GPU designs earlier this year. The company's quarterly revenue was up 12.2% compared to the same quarter last year. analysts predict that Apple Inc. will post 11.18 earnings per share for the current year. The British chip designer eventually sold itself to Canyon Bridge, a private equity investment fund backed by state-owned Chinese fund Yitai Capital, in September.

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The main power management chip controls an iPhone's charging function, battery management, and energy consumption. Dialog stock was trading down 16 percent in Frankfurt trading at 31.01 at 1420 GMT on Thursday.

The chipmaker is the sole provider of power chips for Apple, but if Nikkel's sources familiar with the matter are reliable, then that could change very soon. "I can imagine that this will happen, but not as fast", Brass said in an interview.

Apple is reportedly developing in-house power management chips that could debut in next year's iPhones.

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