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Apple Moving ARM SoC Production From Samsung

Apple to drop Samsung in favor of a Taiwanese components manufacturer as its primary components supplier and with Samsung currently producing the A5 dual core processor for Apple, it is likely that the company would continue to supply parts till the contract period ends. For the next line of processor (A6), Apple is looking for other companies and A6 is a processor designed by Apple which is supposed to be efficient and much snappier than the existing range of chipsets…………

 

Samsung’s ongoing legal dispute with Apple regarding designs and technologies used in their best-selling mobile devices has started affecting the two companies business ties, Apple‘s increasingly tenuous relationship with Samsung as a component supplier for its mobile devices could end next year. The company will likely tap contract fab Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company to build its next-generation ARM SoCs, currently dubbed A6, sometime in 2012. Rumors of a partnership between Apple and TSMC began in early 2011, prior to Apple‘s introduction of the iPad 2 and its A5 processor. Those rumors were later corroborated by sources for EE Times, which suggested Apple was working with TSMC to move its mobile processors to the foundry’s 28nm process. It was later revealed that manufacturing partner Samsung, which produced the A4 processors in the iPhone 4 and original iPad was still producing the A5 processors for Apple’s next-generation products. Apple launched a massive legal attack against Samsung for allegedly copying the look and design of Apple‘s iPhone and iPad for its Galaxy S smartphones and Galaxy Tab tablets. While Apple continues to source components from Samsung for its mobile devices under contracts that were likely signed more than a year ago, Apple presented a huge pile of evidence that Samsung was attempting to copy at least some of the secret sauce that made its iPhone and iPad so successful. So Apple very likely sees moving production to a non-competitor as a strategic business move. Apple is currently having Samsung produce A5 processors on a 45nm process. TSMC is producing mobile SoCs for other smartphone and tablet makers on a 40nm process, though as we mentioned Apple has reportedly been working with TSMC to move to a 28nm process. That may offer Apple a slight competitive advantage, at least until its competitors migrate to the same process. For this reason, it seems more likely that Apple is making the change to cut some, if not all, Samsung-made components out of its supply chain.

 

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