The chip for the next iPhone is reportedly now in production, suggesting that it's on track to launch in September

iPhone XS MaxHollis Johnson/Business Insider

  • Apple's partner has started production of the processor for the next generation of iPhone, according to Bloomberg.
  • The next processor will reportedly be called A13, a follow-up to the current A12 Bionic.
  • If the chip is in production, could be a good indicator that Apple is on target for its traditional September launch.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Apple isn't expected to launch its new iPhones until September, but the chips for its next-generation smartphones are already in production, according to Bloomberg.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. has started producing the processor, which will be called A13, to succeed the current iPhone's A12 Bionic chip, the report says. The firm started test production in April and is expected to begin mass-producing the processors this month.

That would put Apple on the same September launch schedule for the next iPhone as last year, considering Bloomberg also reported around the same time last year that chips for 2018's batch of iPhone had gone into production - phones that Apple introduced that September.

The new chips will power the three new iPhone models Apple will reportedly launch later this year. The report doesn't elaborate on what types of performance improvements Apple's A13 chip will include.

Last year, Apple said the A12 Bionic chip in the iPhone XS, XS Max, and XR offered a 15% speed boost from the previous generation, and that the processor's new neural engine could complete five trillion computations per second, as compared to the A11 Bionic's ability to execute 600 billion operations per second.

The report reinforced other previous rumors about the next iPhone that have surface in recent months regarding the device's cameras and other features. It said, for example, that the new iPhones will support reverse wireless charging, and that the triple camera sensors on the more expensive models will be housed in a square on the phone's top left.

Additionally, Apple is working on a cellular modem and new power components, the report says. That follows a report from The Information which indicated Apple is developing its own cellular modem.

It's unclear exactly what types of benefits Apple's next A13 processor will bring. But considering the next iPhone is expected to have three cameras, it wouldn't be surprising if the A13 had an upgraded image signal processor - a component that includes the depth engine for enabling Portrait Mode.

Otherwise, the new iPhones are expected to look and feel very similar to Apple's current iPhone models, with some slight design differences. In terms of design, the next-generation successors to the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max will be about half a millimeter thicker than the current models, according to Bloomberg. TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has also said the next iPhone could have a frosted glass design.

Apple was not immediately available for comment.

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