Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPad -the new iPad for those just tuning in - has gotten the business from the techies at iFixit, which means investors get clarity into supplier winners and losers. This is unquestionably the most anticipated teardown in history, so let's see what they found.
The new iPad's A5x is again made by Samsung - sorry Taiwan Semi (TSMC). The chip was made in the first week of 2012, which is similar to what was discovered in 2011 when iFixit tore down the iPad 2 Wi-Fi. This suggests chip volumes ramped in Q1, which is good for suppliers.
The MAC/Baseband/Radio with Bluetooth is supplied by Broadcom again. The chip is the BCM4330 which supports Bluetooth 4.0. In the iPad 2, Broadcom had supplied the BCM4329, so this one is...umm...one newer.
The 4329 in the iPad 2 supported Bluetooth 2.1 and was touted as the company's "smallest and lowest cost dual band 802.11 solution". Here's what Broadcom says about the 4330 found in the new iPad: It's "the industry's first combo chip solution certified with the Bluetooth 4.0 standard that integrates Bluetooth low energy". Translation: it uses less power and helps battery life. This is important given the retina resolution data-hogging nature of the new iPad.
The 4330 also supports Wi-Fi Direct and Bluetooth High Speed, which helps devices talk to one another without having to connect to a network access point first. Translation: faster and better integrated communication between your iPhone, iPad and Apple TV.
The two other Broadcom chips in the new iPad are the BCM5973 I/O controller and the BCM5974 touchscreen controller, which are both found in the iPad 2.
No change for TI, Fairchild or Toshiba.
Texas Instruments (NYSE:TXN) supplied the CD3240 device driver, which works in conjunction with the BRCM 5973 and 5974. This is the same as iPad 2 - no surprises there. Fairchild (NYSE:FCS) supplies its FDMC 6683, which is the same chip they supplied for the iPad. Toshiba got the nod for the memory, same as last time.
Qualcomm's migration is complete across iPhone's and iPads.
Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) continued its migration to Apple slot dominance. The iPad features a few different Qualcomm chips - and none from Intel's Infineon, at least none that iFixit has reported yet.
The Qualcomm RTR8600, which allows for the device to work on 3G/4G LTE networks, is new. It's a versatile solution, given its designed for UMTS900, a standard for devices built for EMEA and Asia Pacific. Interestingly, the iPhone 4S sports a RTR8605, as did the HTC Thunderbolt. What's the difference? No idea. Hopefully, a techie can explain the difference between the 8600 and 8605 in the comments below. Regardless, the new iPad is built to be sold worldwide.
The RTR8600 is paired with Qualcomm's MDM 9600 chipset. The 9600 is the same chip found in the iPhone 4S and an upgrade from the MDM 6600 found in the iPad 2 3G. This makes sense given Qualcomm didn't roll out the MDM 9600 until last February - too late to make the cut for the Wi-Fi iPad.
There's also the Qualcomm PM8028 power management IC. The PM8028 appeared in both the iPad 3G and the iPhone 4S. It's hard to dispute Qualcomm is a winner in the new iPad.
Triquint (TQNT) supplies a TQM7M5013 quad-band linear power amplifier module, which according to Triquint is specifically tuned to work with Qualcomm's RTR8600.
Avago (NASDAQ:AVGO) got its A5904 into the iPad. The iPhone 4S had the Avago ACPM-718 multi band power amplifier.
Cirrus (NASDAQ:CRUS) is likely behind the Apple branded Apple 338S0987 chip, so Cirrus kept the audio codec slot. The iPad 2 featured an Apple branded 338S0940 A0BZ1101 SGP, which was also Cirrus Logic.
Finally, Skyworks (NASDAQ:SWKS) supplies the SKY77468-17 front-end module. In the iPad 2 3G, Skyworks supplied two power amplifier modules, the 77710 and 77711. It's hard to tell which chip this is exactly, but Skyworks has been working on multi-chip designs so it's unclear if there is a slot loss here or not.
Disclosure: I am long AVGO, BRCM.