A new report suggests the Apple Watch may run on a processor made by rival Samsung. Apple first introduced the long-rumored gadget in September as a smartwatch that is compatible with iPhones. The Apple Watch is expected to debut sometime this year.
Nanometer production may go back to Samsung
Samsung originally manufactured chips for Apple products such as the iPhone and iPad, but the company was later replaced by TSMC. The reason behind Apple’s switch was because the latter company could produce processors with a smaller nanometer process. Smaller chips mean less energy is consumed.
The recent rumor suggests Apple has ordered 3,000 to 4,000 12-inch wafers per month, and each wafer can supply several hundred processors. If this rumor is true, one would have to wonder why Apple would choose Samsung to make a 28-nanometer chip the over more efficient (and smaller) 20-nanometer chips. There is a possibility Apple is looking to save money by using Samsung’s chips, but it’s also possible the rumor is completely false.
A rise in Apple Watch knockoffs
In other Apple-related news, there were many Apple Watch clones introduced at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show. News source Financial Times took note of the many Apple Watch copycats at CES, some of which are priced as low as $60.
Although many of the devices were turned off for the event, the representatives often claimed these devices ran on the Android operating system even though the gadgets look similar to the Apple Watch. All of these devices were lined up next to other wearable devices that looked similar to Samsung Gear smartwatches and other fitness trackers.
Creative Strategies analyst Ben Bajarin isn’t surprised by the findings. He explained, “China makes a lot of knock-off high-end watches. These products would never leave China. But you’re going to see a flood of these low-cost Android smart watches in China. They are using the design as an entry point — it’s easier for them to copy.”
Apple did not comment on the matter.