Apple enhances its Munich facility

According to Apple’s newsroom, the US tech giant will invest 1 billion EUR in its Munich facility.

Apple will make Munich its European Silicon Design Center. The company wants to add hundreds of new employees and a new state-of-the-art facility focused on connectivity and wireless technologies. In fact, Munich is already Apple’s largest engineering hub in Europe. Thus, it has almost 1,500 engineers from 40 countries working in power management design, application processors, and wireless technologies.

Their work is contributing to Apple’s custom silicon designs with industry-leading performance, powerful features, and incredible efficiency. The expansion in Munich and additional investment in R&D will exceed 1 billion euros in the next three years alone.

In 2015, Apple opened its Bavarian Design Center which has grown to more than 350 engineers. The teams’ initial focus was on power management design, and they have contributed to multiple power management unit chips. Furthermore, the teams have created custom silicon, delivering greater performance and better efficiency for iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac. Over the past decade, Apple’s innovation in energy efficiency has reduced average product energy use by over 70 percent.

In 2019, the company added silicon engineering sites in Nabern, Kirchheim unter Teck. Today, about half of Apple’s global power management design team is located in Germany.  Apple also has teams in Munich working on application processor SoCs, and analog and mixed signal solutions for iPhone.

City profile: Munich

Munich is the capital and most populous city of Bavaria, Germany. The city has almost 1.6 million population as of July 31, 2020 and is the third-largest city in Germany. In addition, it is the 11th-largest city in the EU and its metropolitan region is home to 6 million people

Munich is a global center of art, science, technology, finance, publishing, culture, innovation, education, business, and tourism, now. Also, it enjoys a very high standard and quality of living. In fact, it was ranked by the first in Germany and the third worldwide according to the 2018 Mercer survey.

What is System on a Chip (SoC)?

A system on a chip (SoC) combines the required electronic circuits of various computer components onto a single, integrated chip. SoC is a complete electronic substrate system that may contain analog, digital, mixed-signal or radio frequency functions.

Europe’s Digital Compass

As we see the other article about Europe’s Digital Compass, there are four cardinal points. For example, the second point is to secure, performant and sustainable digital infrastructures.

By 2030, all EU households should have gigabit connectivity and all populated areas should be covered by 5G. The production of cutting-edge and sustainable semiconductors in Europe should be 20% of world production.

Why is Apple’s investment important in the EU?

Today, South Korea and Taiwan accounts for about 40% of the capacity of semiconductor production. The rate in the EU is decreasing drastically. In fact, the number is from about 24% in 2000 to less than 10% in 2020. Thus, the EU wants to account for 20% of the world production of cutting-edge and sustainable semiconductors. In fact, this is the major goal of Europe’s Digital Compass. The next question is how to achieve this ambitious goal.

Some media also reported that the EU wants to attract some major semiconductor manufacturers such as Samsung and TSMC. Apple can be the candidate. This is because the US tech giant is supposed to procure semiconductors by themselves. Now, Intel is suppling its semiconductors to Apple, but this relationship will change sooner or later. In this sense, Apple might also be major semiconductor manufacturer and attracts the EU.

In addition, the EU wants to improve 5G networks coverage and makes use of it. Apple’s Munich facility focuses on 5G and future wireless technologies so that this fact will work for the EU, too. In conclusion, Apple’s investment in its Munich facility leads to win-win situation between Apple and the EU. That is why the announcement is so important for the continent.