A report from Reuters is claiming that Apple has begun trialling production of an A6 processor with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) ahead of an expected 2012 launch. If true it would be a movement away from Samsung, which for the A4 and A5 processor, has been Apple’s sole manufacturing partner.
Such a move would presumably be in part be due to the current legal battle between Apple and Samsung that began earlier this year. As for what the A6 brings, analysts are expecting the processor could be a quad-core chip, a jump from the current dual-core A5 chip and single-core A4 chip.
A final decision has not yet been made on whether TSMC would produce the commercial, high-volume quantities, but TSMC is well prepared for that – they are the largest contract chip manufacturer in the world. CNet notes that analyst Gus Richard told them this month that Intel could be an option as they have been aggressively seeking more business with Apple