The Second Time Apple has Lost a Key Chip Engineer to Microsoft! As part of an attempt to boost its own server chip development activities, Microsoft has recruited a senior semiconductor designer from Apple.
As Bloomberg reported on Wednesday, Apple’s newest employee, Mike Filippo, will apparently be working on processing in Microsoft’s Azure business.
As shown by the poaching attempts, Microsoft may be stepping up efforts to develop its own cloud computing server chips. Amazon and Alphabet, the company’s main competitors, are undertaking similar initiatives.
Microsoft Hires Key Apple Engineer to Work on Custom Chips
Filippo worked as a top chip architect at Arm for around ten years before joining Apple in 2019. Before that, he worked at Intel. According to Bloomberg, the core technologies of Arm’s architecture for smartphones and other platforms have been advanced during his time there.
Filippo is the second high-profile semiconductor engineer to leave Apple in the last several months. Jeff Wilcox, Apple’s principal silicon designer, was hired by Intel earlier this month.
According to an article published in December 2021, Apple was taking measures to avoid poaching, including stock payments of up to $180,000 for top technical talent.
As global supply restrictions and semiconductor shortages loom over the industry, technology firms are increasingly attempting to manufacture their own chips.
Apple has made more progress than any other company in developing its own semiconductor technology. Apple first launched the M1 Pro and M1 Max in October of last year, and these two silicon processors from the company continue to lead the field in terms of performance and battery efficiency.
The Second Time Apple has Lost a Key Chip Engineer to Microsoft
Mike Filippo will work on processors within Microsoft’s Azure group, run by Rani Borkar, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the move hasn’t been announced. A Microsoft spokesman confirmed the hire of Filippo, who also has worked at Arm Ltd. and Intel Corp.
The move suggests that Microsoft is accelerating a push to create homegrown chips for its servers, which power Azure cloud-computing services. The focus on custom chips follows similar efforts by Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Amazon.com Inc., Microsoft’s biggest cloud rivals – Apple Lost Second Key Chip Engineer.
The shift threatens to undercut Microsoft’s longtime processor partners, Intel and Advanced Micro Devices Inc., which currently supply chips for Azure servers. Intel fell as much as 2% on the news Wednesday, while AMD dropped 1.1%.
For Apple, Filippo’s exit marks another loss of a high-profile engineer. He joined Apple in 2019 as a chip architect after serving as a top designer of semiconductors at Arm for a decade. He was at Intel for about five years before that. Filippo is credited with advancing the capabilities of Arm’s underlying technologies in phones and other devices….