Apple chucks PA Semi at Jesus Phone
'We will build our own mega-chips'
Steve Jobs has admitted that Apple will design its very own super-chips for both the iPhone and the iPod.
Earlier this week, after his keynote speech at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference in San Francisco, Jobs slipped a few extra words to The New York Times, and at one point - while describing his grand plan to reinvent the world of parallel computing - his mind wandered to P.A. Semi, the chip start-up Apple purchased back in April.
"P.A. Semi is going to do system-on-chips for iPhones and iPods," he said. Apple didn't respond when we tried to verify the quote, but we trust The Times.
In the wake of its P.A. acquisition, Apple was characteristically mum on its plans for the company founded by Dan Dobberpuhl, lead designer of DEC's Alpha and StrongARM chips. "Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not comment on our purposes and plans," a spokesman told Forbes.
But more than a few pundits suspected that Jobs nabbed the chip maker with an eye on the Jesus Phone - and maybe the iPod too.
At the moment, the iPhone uses ARM processors and everyone thinks it was built by Samsung. But they also think Apple has more than a small say in what Samsung builds.
Well, it now looks like Apple will take many matters into its own hands.
Not all that surprising, really. But it's nice to see Steve Jobs spill the beans. ®
microsoft designed GPU? microsoft couldnt design anything like that. its just your bog standard ATi xenos fare. designed by ATI engineers over in Canada
That should work.
@everybody who thinks PPC chips in mobile devices are a bad idea, Motorola have been using them for that since the mid 90s.
Why do people keep insisting that Apple are a software company?
Apple are a hardware company, pure and simple.
True, they do create great software but it's also true that they go to great lengths to ensure that it only runs on their hardware, a sure sign that they are interested in selling hardware and NOT software, If they wanted to be a software company then I would be able to buy a copy of MacOSX and run it on my PC.
Apple have long seen Sony as their primary competitor. Up until the nineties, Sony products where THE products to own in the A/V market. Apple took it on themselves to take that position from Sony, and (with a lot of help from Sony) have pretty much succeeded in doing that.
Mising the Point!
You are all missing the point. Don't forget that PA Semi supplies chips for military use. This is obviously part of Apples plan to take over the world by using hordes of iPhone zombies to execute remote launches of military grade weaponry on all who would doubt the mighty power of the Apple!
Actually, Apple have a pretty long history of designing their own in-house chips. And very good they were too, working with VLSI on application specific ICs (ASICs) throught the 80s and 90s.
Admittedly, this has pretty much fallen by the wayside with the availability of cheap general purpose chips; but even as late as the 90s Apple were designing custom SCSI, audi, and graphics chips.
When Acorn spun off ARM (Acorn RISC Machine, a nice recursive acronym there!), Apple and VLSI were a couple of the original investors.
And anyway, the reason Apple bought PA Semi is exactly because designing new ICs is 'insanely difficult'. Apple got all the insanely clever employees of PA Semi too. And they *can* design a chipset!
While I agree that HTC don't design any chips, maybe you ought to take another look at Sony. Aside from a bunch of custome ASICs for their home electronics divisions, Sony (along with Toshiba and IBM) where responsible for designing the Cell chip. You may have heard of that...
Paris, 'cos she likes mayo with her chips...