Apple is reportedly working on decreasing the size of the Face ID sensor chip in both iPhones and iPad starting with new models later this year.
A new report from Digitimes states that Apple has decided to downscale the die size of the VCSEL chips. These chips are effectively tied to the Face ID scanner of the iPhone and iPad. Scaling back on the die size could assist Apple in reducing production costs for its devices as more chips would be produced on a single wafer.
It’s unknown what sort of other advantages this may lead to for Apple. Potentially, the redesigned VCSEL chip could allow Apple to explore integrating new functions into the component. It could also free up internal space. There’s also the possibility that the decreased size of the VCSEL chip would lead to a smaller notch on future iPhones and iPads.
The Digitimes report indicates that Apple is looking at integrating the smaller chip in time for this year’s iPhone. Releasing late 2021, it is expected that future devices, including iPhone 13 Pro models and new iPad Pro models, will include the smaller chip. Previous reports have already noted that it’s expected that the iPhone 13 notch will be reduced. This is partially thanks to the refined earpiece speaker, which has been moved to the top of the notch.