Last year, Apple was TSMC’s sole client with access to its cutting-edge 5nm EUV chip capacity. That is set to change by this year’s end as the foundry is ramping up the capacity of 5nm and its derivative 4nm wafers. The overall 5nm production for this year is expected to be more than twice as much as in 2020, with a planned increase of 4x for the 4nm and 5nm capacity by the year 2023.
TSMC has already increased its capital expenditure to $30 billion this year to meet the growing demand, with a total of $100 billion slated to be invested in increasing advanced chip foundry capacity. Most of the foundry’s 5nm and 4nm capacity in 2021 will continue to be dominated by Apple’s SKUs, most notably the A15 mobile SoC, and the upcoming M1X and M2 processors.
2022 and 2023 should see an increase in the foundry’s 5nm client base with AMD, MediaTek, and Qualcomm all expected to leverage the advanced node. MediaTek’s next-generation Dimensity 2000 series and AMD’s Zen 4/RDNA 3 processors are slated to take advantage of the N5 and N4 processes, although it’s unclear whether supply will be sufficient to reasonably meet demand.