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A report by Chinese newspaper Commercial Times claims that Apple is working on the next version of its A5 chip, which will be called the A6.

Apple-A6

Rumors surrounding the next version of the iPhone – the iPhone 5, V or 4S, whatever you like to call it – are getting hotter by the day! In the last four days alone, four separate rumors related to the next-gen iPhone have been covered here on Redmond Pie alone.

Today’s rumor comes from Chinese newspaper Commerical Times which claims that the A6 chip will manufactured by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC). The newspaper cites analyst Dan Heyler who is a semiconductor analyst at Merrill Lynch, a financial management and advisory company:

TSMC stands a good chance of winning orders for Apple’s A6 processors, the paper quoted Dan Heyler, a semiconductor analyst with Merrill Lynch in Taipei, as indicating. But even if TSMC grabs all Apple’s tablet chip orders for 2012, sales generated from the orders will account for only 2% of TSMC’s overall sales for the year, Heyler was quoted as saying.

Keep in mind that the A4 and A5 chips were manufactured by Samsung Electronics. If TSMC wins the orders of the A6 processor for the iPhone 6, it would certainly be a loss for Samsung:

Apple reportedly continues to contract Samsung Electronics to manufacture its A5 processors, using the foundry’s 45nm process, the Commercial Times quoted industry sources as saying in a separate report. One thing for sure is that TSMC will not gain any orders from Apple in 2011, the paper observed.

It certainly feels a little strange talking about the iPhone 6 before the iPhone 5 has even been announced. But I do have one bit of an information to talk about pertaining to the iPhone 5: Digitimes reports that 15 million units of the iPhone 5 will be manufactured within the first four weeks of availability. That sure is a lot of silicon, folks!

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iPhone 6 concept (credit: Roman Sima)

Once again, with these rumors, you really can’t completely trust them until things get official. However, in my experience, the eventual announcement is often pretty close to the rumors that surround it. So take the rumors with a pinch of Sodium Chloride.

The A6 chip for the iPhone 6/iPad 3 is expected to either be a significantly faster clocked version of the dual-core A5 chip, or, a quad-core mobile processor.

It is also expected to shoot lasers and bend the space-time continuum.

(via RazorianFly, DigiTimes)

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