Apple is one of Samsung’s biggest customers, contributing $6 billion worth of business to the company’s bottom line in 2010 alone. That said, Samsung may soon regret its patent tussling with Apple as the purveyor of iPhones and iPads is starting to look elsewhere for many of the components it previously relied upon Samsung for.
We’ve previously reported that Apple was looking to shift its A5 manufacturing duties from Samsung to Taiwan Semiconductor (TSMC) but was unable to do so on such late notice. Nevertheless, manufacturing of Apple’s new A6 chip, which will likely debut on the iPad 3, will be done by TSMC according to the latest rumblings.
And now comes word via Digitimes that Apple is increasing its purchases of DRAM and NAND flash from Japanese companies like Toshiba and Elpida Memory at the expense of Samsung.
Apple has moved to reduce its reliance on memory supplies from Samsung Electronics, the sources claimed. The vendor has procured more NAND flash parts from Toshiba, and mobile RAM from Elpida, the sources indicated.
The ongoing patent lawsuits between Apple and Samsung have been key to encouraging Apple to diversify its supplier base, the sources pointed out. Samsung has been the largest component supplier for Apple’s products.
Samsung is currently one of the largest suppliers of both DRAM and NAND flash, and while Apple may not be able to fully wean itself off of Samsung just yet, it’s clearly looking to lessen its reliance on the Korean-based company as much as possible.