Apple Takes Steps To Lessen Reliance On Samsung With A6 Processor

Samsung Apple

While Apple and Samsung may be at war in the court rooms around the world, they also have a symbiotic business relationship. Samsung makes critical components for Apple’s iPhone such as the processor, DRAM etc., while Samsung parts division generates billions in revenues thanks to the component contracts from Apple.

But despite Samsung’s attempt to maintain an internal firewall between its handset business and its component operations, Apple is taking steps to lessen its reliance on Samsung.

The Korea Times reports how the relationship between the two companies has evolved from a “love-hate” relationship into a “hate-hate” relationship.

The report claims that Apple did not work with Samsung on the development of its new A6 processor, which  powers Apple’s new iPhone 5 and simply used them as a foundry to manufacture the chip. Samsung had apparently contributed to the design and development of processors used in previous generation iPhones.

Apple is still relying on the Korean firm to manufacture its chips but has made it clear it will no longer use its rival’s technology, according to a senior Samsung official.

“Samsung’s agreement with Apple is limited to manufacturing the A6 processors. Apple did all the design and we are just producing the chips on a foundry basis,’’ he said on the sidelines of a technology fair at KINTEX in Goyang, Gyeonggi Province.

The Korea Times also points to a report from Barclays, which claims that Apple has signed a deal with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), the world’s largest contract chip manufacturer for the production of A7 quad-core processors that could be used in iOS devices in 2014. 

The rift has already extended to other components, as Apple has reduced memory chip –  both dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chips and NAND memory chips orders to Samsung for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

It doesn’t come as a surprise that the patent war in the court rooms around the world is contributing to the meltdown in the partnership.

[via The Korea Times]