During its quarterly earnings report, TSMC confirmed that it’s 3nm process is on track for risk production in the first half of 2022, followed by mass production in the second half of the same year. Although the foundry’s 3nm node will continue to use the FinFet transistor unlike Samsung’s GAA (More on that here), the new process will still deliver significant improvements both in terms of density and performance per watt.
Compared to the 5nm EUV node, the 3nm process will increase the transistor density by a lofty 70%, with a projected increase in performance by 15%, accompanied by a 30% drop in power draw.
TSMC is planning its 3nm process to be the successor to the 5nm node which is expected to become the process of choice for chipmakers like AMD, Qualcomm, and even Intel. Apple already started shipping devices leveraging the 5nm EUV node earlier this year.
The company is going to spend $15 billion for the R&D and testing of the 3nm node in 2021 itself, with a larger amount set aside for 2022.