The latest iPhone 15 Pro models have within them one of the biggest chip innovations that Apple has ever used — the 3nm production process. Using much smaller components than other methods, the 3nm process makes a chip that is more powerful, more efficient, and potentially smaller. After putting it in the iPhone 15, Apple’s next step will be to put it in MacBooks and iPads in the form of the M3; But it looks like the company will be making fewer than it first thought.
Ming-Chi Kuo reports “Apple’s 3nm demand for 2024 would be below expectations”, citing this year’s declining iPad and MacBook sales. Given that Apple has, apparently, bought the whole stock of 3nm produced chips, it could cause some worry at Cupertino.
Everyone is having problems
Demand for pretty much everything has gone down, so it’s not just Apple that’s having problems with laptop and tablet sales. Kuo reports that Qualcomm, Samsung, and other companies are looking at lowered demand for their chips.
Kuo attributes the falling demand for MacBooks and iPads to the ending of work from home as the world returns to something that resembles pre-pandemic life. Apple silicon is also now an industry staple, so there is less buzz around the standard.
Having said that, the iPhone 15 Pro Max has been one of the most preordered iPhones yet, with longer waiting times than Apple anticipated. That iPhone has a 3nm chip at its core, so it could well be something that consumers are interested in — although it could also be the zoom lens on the back that’s pulling people into the larger of the new iPhones.
Whatever happens, we’re going to get a new MacBook and iPad at some point with a 3nm produced chip — there just might be fewer of them to buy.