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Report: Apple to drop Samsung for A6 SoC production

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 27 Jun 2011 11:58

Report: Apple to drop Samsung for A6 SoC production Apple to cut ties with competitor?
Samsung made the A4 ARM system on a chip (SoC) that powered the iPhone 4 and first iPad for Apple, and also has gone on to produce the A5 processors. Now, reports suggest that Apple will drop Samsung for the production of the custom A6 SoC in 2012, favoring a partnership with the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company.

Recent media reports (EETimes) suggested that Apple was working with TSMC on the possibility of fabricating the A6 SoC using 28 nanometer process technology. TSMC is currently prodicing mobile processors for other manufacturers on a 40 nanometer process.

Samsung is currently producing the A5 on a 45 nanometer process, and so moving to TSMC could provide Apple with a competitive advantage over competitors in its next generation mobile products.

Additionally, Apple has recently swung its legal fists at Samsung over what it calls the "cloning" of its products. Its latest action against Samsung is a lawsuit filed in South Korea, Samsung's home turf, for alleged patent infringement, but Samsung has also sued Apple for the same reason. Talks between high executives at both firms are reportedly ongoing.

With Samsung becoming Apple's main competitor in many ways, the iPhone-maker may be determined to cut business ties as much as it can with the South Korean giant. Apple was Samsung's biggest customer in the first quarter according to Samsung's reports, with Apple buying up enormous amounts of semiconductors.

Tags: Samsung Apple
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