IBM's latest breakthrough will lead to faster and more efficient CPUs

Ibm 2nm Chip
Ibm 2nm Chip (Image credit: IBM)

What you need to know

  • IBM states that it's created the first semiconductor with 2nm nanosheet technology.
  • The company estimates that the technology will almost double the performance of 7nm processors.
  • Chips made with the 2nm process will also use less power, according to IBM.

IBM has made a breakthrough in the field of computer processing. The company states that it's made the first semiconductor with 2nm nanosheet technology. Processors built with this technology should deliver almost double the performance while using less energy than the current 7nm processors, according to IBM.

IBM claims that the 2nm process will improve performance by 45% at the same power as modern 7nm processors. They should also deliver the same performance with only 75% as much energy.

Up to 50 billion transistors will be able to fit on a chip the size of a fingernail when using this process. Anantech asked IBM to clarify the size of a fingernail in this case and was told that in this context, a fingernail is 150 square millimeters. As a result, the transistors are said to be at a density of 333 million transistors per square millimeter.

As pointed out by the BBC, when IBM announced its 5nm breakthrough in 2017, the company said that it could fit up to 30 billion transistors into the same space.

While the breakthrough is notable, it will be some time before anyone can purchase chips built using this process. IBM first demonstrated the 7nm process in 2015, and AMD's Ryzen processors using the 7nm process didn't become widely available until 2019.

There isn't a timeline available for when chips built with this process will become available.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at