Apple has dropped Samsung from A10 processor production for its next-generation iOS devices, according to a new report. Sources say the company has made Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) its sole supplier.
Apple and Samsung are often bitter rivals in court, but they’re good friends in business, with Apple relying on a number of Samsung components for its computers and mobile devices. However, some reports have claimed Apple has been trying to change that.
In recent years, Apple has been looking to other manufacturers with a view to leaving Samsung completely, but that’s not easy; the Cupertino company sells so many devices that it’s difficult for other component supplier to meet the strong demands of its consumers.
Apple’s existing A9 processors packed into iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus are manufactured by both Samsung and TSMC.
Apple has taken one big step towards a Samsung-free future, though. According to a report from South Korea’s Electronic Times, relayed by Reuters, Apple has made TSMC exclusive supplier of A10 chips for iPhone 7 and future iPads, leaving Samsung out in the cold.
Of course, Apple will still require other components from Samsung — such as displays, storage chips, and earlier processors for older devices that it will continue to sell. But those processors will have been big business that Samsung misses out on.
Fortunately for Samsung, it is now making Snapdragon 820 processors for Qualcomm instead, so that’s some consolation.