Despite the fact that Apple and Samsung are literally daggers drawn in courts all around the world, Apple has decided to keep Samsung its primarily supplier for A6 quad-core processors that will debut in the next generation iPhone and iPad, aptly named iPhone 5 and iPad 3.
Despite their legal battles, Samsung is increasing the production of A6 quad-core processors for Apple at its production facility located in Austin Texas. Previously it was reported that Apple would be giving orders for A6 manufacturing to SPIL and TSMC. It turns out that Samsung has been retained as the primary supplier whereas TSMC will only be manufacturing A6 processors with custom designs from Apple in specific volume.
An executive for one of Apple’s component suppliers said the following in an statement to Korea Times:
Apple has been in talks with Samsung over shipment of its A6 quad-core mobile processor (AP) chips to be used in the next iPhone. It appears that Apple clearly has concluded that Samsung remains a critical business partner. Samsung Electronics will apply its advanced 28-nanometer processing technology to produce qualified A6 mobile APs. TSMC will provide customized chips with designs from Apple, however, the volume will be very small.
As far as TSMC and the production of quad-core A6 processors is concerned, sources indicate that TSMC has yet to stabilize its production and Apple can not take a risk and jeopardize the performance of its next generation iPhone and iPad by placing the sole responsibility of manufacturing processors to a relatively unstable manufacturer. Samsung on the other hand has been providing processors for Apple and given the fact that their production is more streamlined and stable, Apple decided to keep Samsung as a crucial business partner regardless of the fact that they have sued the Korean manufacturer in a number of courts around the world for design copying and patent infringement.
Regardless of being retained as a crucial processor manufacturer for Apple, don’t expect the Cupertino outfit to go easy in court. Apple has already blocked Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 sales in Australia and a number of European countries. Apple has been able to prove on many grounds that Samsung did infact copy and infringe upon their patents, yet an ultimate judgement is still pending in all courts where lawsuits have been filed.