Just last year Apple
and Qualcomm were engaged in a long legal battle over the chip designer’s licensing policy. According to Qualcomm, this policy can be boiled down to four words: “no license, no chips.” Both firms also sued each other claiming patent infringement. Eventually, both companies shook hands and agreed to a settlement. Apple paid Qualcomm an estimated $4.5 billion and both sides agreed to drop all legal charges against each other. Apple received a license for chipsets from Qualcomm for six years with an option for two additional years, and a multi-year chip supply agreement.
So Apple and Qualcomm are not only bosom buddies now, Qualcomm has nothing but kind words to say about the iPhone manufacturer’s brand new home-grown chipset, the Apple M1. Built by TSMC using its 5nm process node, the M1 is Apple’s replacement for the Intel chips that it used to employ on the lower-end MacBook. The M1 sports an incredible 16 billion transistors packed inside (compared to 11.8 billion transistors on the iPhone 12
series’ A14 chipsets). The larger the number of transistors found inside a square mm, the more powerful and energy-efficient a chip is. Consider that the M1 and the A14 both squeeze 171.3 million transistors into a space about the size of a square mm.
Qualcomm president Cristiano Amon praises Apple’s new powerful M1 chip that is replacing Intel chips on some MacBook models
Qualcomm president Cristiano Amon had nothing but praise for Apple’s M1. On The Verge’s podcast, Amon was asked if there were any lessons that Qualcomm and Microsoft could learn from Apple and the M1. The executive said that Qualcomm was very happy about the announcement “because it validates our belief…that the mobile user is defining what they expect out of the PC experience.”
Amon also pointed out that Adobe recently announced new applications that are ARM native and said that once you make it ARM native, “performance increases as you have now app compatibility…It’s about battery life, it’s about connected, it’s about a whole different multimedia experience.”