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Report: Apple moves away from Samsung for ARM chip supplies

updated 09:00 pm EST, Wed December 26, 2012

Taiwanese 'flip-chip' maker Unimicron to ramp up to meet demand

According to reports in a Taiwanese electronics-industry trade publication, Apple is shifting orders for the base ARM chips on which the company builds its Ax line of in-house processors away from Samsung-owned SemCo and towards Taipei-based Unimicron Technology Corporation. If true, it would be yet another move away from using Samsung as a supplier, presumably due to the latter's copying of its technology and litigious SEP abuse.

Unimicron is said to have passed a smaller-scale test in the current quarter for supplying the "chip scale package" or basic ARM foundation for Apple's processor line, and will increase production once a new plant is up and running, reports China Times. Apple has been seen to be actively withdrawing as much of its business away from Samsung as it can, though the Korean manufacturer remains a major supplier of chips and other technologies that go into Apple's iOS products.

Apple is also said to be farming out some production on its Ax-class chips to TSMC, also in Taiwan. Currently, most Ax processors are actually made in the US, by a Samsung facility in Austin, TX. The iPad maker is also thought to have dropped Samsung as a battery supplier for its iPad and MacBook batteries, and has diversified its display providers in order to reduce its dependence on Samsung.

by MacNN Staff



  1. msuper69

    Professional Poster

    Joined: 01-16-00

    Samsung is reaping what they've sown.

  1. bobolicious

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: 08-15-02

    As a consumer I too will be very reluctant to knowingly send any money/business Samesong's way in the future...

  1. Bobfozz

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 07-28-08

    Unfortunately the "Bad Boys" in Korea don't "think" that far down the road. For years they have gotten away with this kind of duplicitous behavior. They finally tried it on a company that ROARED back and has the funds to keep driving it home until they "get it."

  1. Ben IncaHutz

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 09-28-12

    Maybe this will teach Apple to design AND build in the US! Apple charges alot for goods made overseas.
    I would be willing to pay the premium for American made goods.
    I vote with my wallet.

  1. hayesk

    Professional Poster

    Joined: 09-17-99

    Originally Posted by Ben IncaHutzView Post

    Maybe this will teach Apple to design AND build in the US! Apple charges alot for goods made overseas.
    I would be willing to pay the premium for American made goods.
    I vote with my wallet.

    Apple sells a lot of goods in other countries. Manufacturing in the US is only relevant to buyers in the US; in other words, not that important.

  1. climacs

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: 09-06-01

    I bought a Panasonic TV because fcuk Samsung (I was originally considering a Samsung, they make quite good TVs but f them).

    As for building in the US, I wish they would but the fact is that most people vote with their wallets and they vote for 'cheap' over 'made in USA'. They only want 'made in USA' if it costs the same as made in China.

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