Apple Inc. is announcing a $1.5 billion investment into a chip company it hopes will boost the speed of its products and drive its revenues higher, as it expands its mobile chip business.
The $1,000 chip unit, named “Core X,” will be the first of its kind in the industry.
Apple, based in Cupertino, Calif., said it will also use its chips to power “other emerging products,” including Apple Watch and a new Mac Pro.
Apple is also buying up chips used by other chipmakers to help its new Mac mini and Mac Pro computers.
Apple’s announcement on Tuesday is the latest sign of progress for chipmakers, who have been pushing into the space for years.
The industry has been struggling to find a way to make high-speed chips, which are often used in high-end computing and other consumer electronics, fast enough to compete with slower processors and cheaper processors.
The new chip unit will help the company increase its chip speed and chip density, said Steve Bittner, chief executive of chipmaker TSMC.
It’s not clear how much Apple will be paying for the new unit, which will not be sold directly to customers.
The company expects the chip to be ready in about three years.
Apple will also buy more than 50,000 chips, about one-third of its chip sales.
TSMC, which makes chips for a wide range of computer chips, has been growing at an impressive clip, and Apple bought it in 2012 for $6.2 billion.
Apple also said it would use the chip unit to power new products, including an iPhone, iPad, and Mac mini.
“Our chip strategy and product innovation is a key component of our strategy to deliver the best products and services for the next generation of customers, and we are very pleased to expand our chip team to include Core X,” Apple said in a statement.
“This is a significant investment in the chip business, and our chip sales will drive revenue and revenue growth over the long term.”
Apple also announced that its chips will be used to power its new iMac computer.
The iMac, the world’s most expensive computer, is being made by a company called InnoVida that had previously been bought by Apple in 2010.
It was the company’s first computer to be built entirely by Apple.
Read more Apple’s investment in Core X comes as chipmakers are racing to develop faster chips that can handle higher speeds and more processors, according to a report in The Wall St. Journal.
The article reported that the chip maker Intel is investing $300 million in a company it will be using to develop chips for its upcoming iMac computers.
The chip company Intel Corp. plans to use a $50 million fund to help pay for the work.
Intel declined to comment on the report.
Chipmakers also have been struggling for years to produce fast chips for phones and tablets.
Last year, chipmakers were spending hundreds of millions of dollars developing faster chips for smartphones.
A report from the research firm Gartner Inc. in February said chipmakers need to get more than one billion chips per year to get any competitive advantage in the fast-growing smartphone market.
Apple and Intel are the latest technology companies to invest in chip production and are among the few companies that are building their own chips.