IBM says it has made a significant breakthrough in computer processors by creating a 2nm chip in its test lab.
The process used to make computer chips is measured in nanometres (nm) – with a lower number usually signifying a leap forward.
IBM claims its test chip can improve performance by 45% over current 7nm commercially available products.
It is also more energy-efficient – using 75% less energy to match current performance, IBM said.
It claims the tech could “quadruple” mobile phone battery life, and phones might only need to be charged every four days.
The computer chip industry used to use nanometres – one billionth of a metre – to measure the physical size of transistors. Today, a lower “nm” number is widely seen as a marketing term to describe new generations of the technology, leading to better performance and lower power.
IBM said the test chip for its 2nm process was built at its Albany research lab in the United States.
The news comes amid an international shortage of computer chips and a bid to shake up chip manufacturing to rely less on major foundries in China and Taiwan.
Car manufacturers have been forced to suspend production due to the lack of computer parts; smartphone makers have warned product releases could be affected; and high-end computer components such as graphics cards are difficult to find and selling for high prices.
By the time when this is in production, Apple will have the M9 chip already in use.