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Apple acquires chipmaker Intrinsity

05 May 2010

In a bid to create faster chips for its devices, Apple has purchased Intrinsity, which has already created custom chips for the iPad. 

When Apple CEO Steve Jobs announced the iPad in late January, the biggest surprise was that the device included a custom A4 chip for better speed and performance. 

While it hasn’t been confirmed that the custom chip is in the iPad, it would make sense after Apple’s purchase of Intrinsity for an estimated $121 million. 

According to the New York Times, this is the second time in two years that Apple has purchased a small chip company in search of chips that create a faster processor using less energy. In 2008 Apple bought PA Semi, which also specialised in creating fast, low-power chips. 

Intrinsity is known for making chips that run at 1000 megahertz, which is 350 megahertz more than the most popular mobile chips on the market. The A4 chip in the iPad also runs at 1000 megahertz, which is another sign that the company created the chips for the device. 

Apple’s quest to build faster and more efficient chips for its mobile devices is a different strategy from its range of computers, which are powered by Intel chips. 

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