May 17, 2011
Nearly one year after the iPhone 4 was released, someone has finally figured out who is supplying the iPhone’s low power audio signal processor. In other words, the company behind Apple’s way of cutting out ambient noise and improving sound quality for its latest handheld. According to iFixIt, Mountain Valley, California-based Audience is the provider. Soon after the iPhone 4’s debut, iFixIt recognized Apple’s newest handset contained a small, 3mm x 3mm chip. Unfortunately, it was white labeled meaning Apple asked the manufacturer to remove their branding from the package. In February, when the Verizon iPhone was released, iFixIt again noticed the chip, which contained an embedded digital signal processor with accompanying analog front ends. However, it wasn't until this week that Chipworks decapped the chip and figured out it belonged to Audience. According to iFixIt:
This is a huge win for Audience. They’re seeing impressive traction in other smartphones. Going forward, it will be interesting to see if Apple decides to integrate the technology into the A5 (as they have with other subcomponents) or if this relationship with Audience is long-term. Clearly Audience is betting on the latter—and thus far, they’ve shown impressive execution.Take a listen: We're not sure why Apple kept Audience's involvement with the iPhone 4 secret, but now the mystery is solved. What do you think? Leave your comments below.