A7 chip

Apple's been keen to move more and more of their design work in-house, and the latest hires indicate that they might even be ready to move baseband processor work into the labs of Cupertino as well. According to AppleInsider, two senior Broadcom engineers — Paul Change and Xiping Wang — have joined Apple after years at the wireless chip manufacturer, and Apple has apparently added "at least 30 mid- and senior-level baseband software and hardware engineers from Broadcom" and Qualcomm in the last three years. Apple also has about 50 more openings for RF chip design engineers.

For the last few years Apple has exclusively used their own A-series processores in iOS devices, and recently purchased a majority stake in display chip builder renesas as well. Though Apple has relied on Qualcomm for some time for their baseband processors, it's not terribly surprising to see them wanting to move that chip design in-house as well.

The moves to do in-house work for processors and chipsets has been driven not just by Apple's famous desire for control, but to build chips that are perfectly-suited to what Apple wants and needs for their devices. That means processors that leave out anything not needed for lower manufacturing costs and improved power efficiency, as compared to off-the-shelf processors that are designed to handle anything and everything a manufacturer might want to do — all while advancing beyond what the competition is putting out.

Source: AppleInsider, two senior Broadcom engineers