Chipworks Reveals Details of Apple A4 Processor for iPad

Chipworks, the world’s leader in reverse engineering and patent infringement analysis for semiconductors and microelectronic systems, announced details on the Apple A4 chip taken from the Apple iPad. The A4 represents a first for Apple in reportedly designing their own processor, which Chipworks confirms is manufactured by Samsung in their 45nm process.

Die Mark on Apple A4 Processor for iPad - Chipworks

45nm processing has several advantages:

  • Lower power because the transistors are smaller
  • More processing capability per mm2
  • More die/wafer, so ultimately cheaper die

“The A4 chip is 7.3 x 7.3 mm, giving a die area of 53.3 mm2, which is almost 23% bigger than the iPod 3G processor,” said Dick James, Senior Technology Analyst for Chipworks. “There is clearly more processing power in the A4. Some of this is likely taken up by the 64-bit memory path that the A4 uses to speed up the response time of the system, but until we get a detailed floor plan we will not be able to say for sure what else is in there.”

More info: Apple A4 iPad chip

About Chipworks
Chipworks is the recognized leader in reverse engineering and patent infringement analysis of semiconductors and electronic systems. The company’s ability to analyze the circuitry and physical composition of these systems makes it a key partner in the success of the world’s largest semiconductor and microelectronics companies. Intellectual property groups and their legal counsel trust Chipworks for success in patent licensing and litigation – earning hundreds of millions of dollars in patent licenses, and saving as much in royalty payments. Research & Development and Product Management rely on Chipworks for success in new product design and launch, saving hundreds of millions of dollars in design, and earning even more through superior product design and faster launches.