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Apple switching from TSMC back to Samsung in 2015, reports say

updated 09:18 am EDT, Thu July 17, 2014

Reasons for possible reversal unclear

TSMC will probably lose chip production orders from Apple and Qualcomm to Samsung in the second half of 2015, says KGI Securities analyst Michael Liu, quoted by Reuters. Liu made the comments in a memo issued after a TSMC investor conference. The Commercial Times and the Economic Daily News both suggest that Qualcomm has in fact already started working with Samsung, a claim which has hurt TSMC shares in trading.

Apple turning back to Samsung would be an unexpected shift. Although Samsung has long been the sole producer of A-series processors for iPhones, iPods, and iPads, relations between the two companies have been strained by lawsuits, and TSMC is believed to have just started shipping A8 chips to Apple. It could be that Apple isn't happy with TSMC's yields or prices.

Early this month, a rumor hinted that Samsung has already secured orders for a trial run of A9 processors built with a 14nm manufacturing process. This fall's new iPhones and iPads are expected to use the still-unannounced A8.




by MacNN Staff

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  1. pairof9s

    Senior User

    Joined: 01-03-08

    I find it a bit amusing for some to assume that Samsung's actions in smartphones would somehow jeopardize their contracts with Apple in a different sector, chip mfg. Just because they build (not design) iPhone chip, it does not mean they can use it to build a better overall phone. Recent sales figures seem to bare out that iPhones are very favored for more than just their hardware, rather the overall experience...something Samsung's phone division is having a hard time matching.

  1. coffeetime

    Senior User

    Joined: 11-15-06

    From the sound of it, it seems Samsung is still the best chip maker. Apple seems to trust them more in quality chip making plus among others (prompt shipment, pricing...etc).

  1. yticolev

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 05-22-02

    "Samsung's actions in smartphones would somehow jeopardize their contracts with Apple in a different sector"

    Google's close relationship with Apple with Schmidt on Apple's board certainly gave them a head start redesigning Android for touch screens. Giving Samsung blueprints to the most advanced phone chips is not without competitive risk.

  1. shawnde

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 04-01-08

    @pairof9s

    The manufacturing deal may not give them a technological advantage, but it does give them a supply-chain and economic advantage, which they're using directly to counter back at their best customer: Apple !!! They're the current example of "cutting off the hand that's feeding you ... " This is why Apple wants to limit their production capacity by shifting their orders to TSMC or another fabrication partner, and therefore reducing the economies of scale for Samsung. It makes perfect business sense, and Apple should do just that (I hope).

  1. shawnde

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 04-01-08

    MacNN has a really stupid commenting system.

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