Apples A5 Processors: Made in Texas

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Apple’s A5 processor, the chip that drives the iPad 2 and iPhone 4S, apparently comes from Samsung’s Austin, Texas, facility instead of factories overseas. The Austin location covers 1.6 million square feet, and includes a recently added US$3.6 billion production line just for non-memory chips, according to unnamed sources speaking with Reuters.

Samsung makes Apple's A5 chips in AustinSamsung makes Apple’s A5 chips in Austin

The factory also produces flash memory chips like those used in the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. Sources claim the processor chip production line is dedicated almost completely to Apple’s needs.

Apple and Samsung aren’t confirming the reports, although a Samsung spokesperson did confirm the expansion at the facility to produce logic chips.

The A5 process first appeared in the iPad 2, released in March. Apple also uses the chip in the iPhone 4S which hit store shelves this fall.

Even though the companies work together to make the iPad and iPhone processors, they aren’t on the best of terms. The two have been fighting in court in several countries over patent infringement claims for several months with both companies alleging that the other’s mobile devices use patented technologies without proper licensing.

A German court issued an injunction blocking the sale of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in the country, and the company lost an appeal to overturning that ruling. Apple was also awarded a temporary injunction through a Dutch court blocking the sale of some Galaxy devices in the European Union.

Samsung recently managed to get an injunction in Australia overturned and plans to start selling the Galaxy Tab in that country this week.

Comments

jfbiii

Appropriate that an ARM’d processor is made in Texas.

Lee Dronick

Appropriate that an ARM?d processor is made in Texas.

Yee haw! smile

Putting on my intel analyst hat I think the more things are manufactured here, or at least outside of China, the better.

Ross Edwards

I’d love to see more things made in the U.S. if it is cost-effective.  Perhaps we’ve reached a tipping point at which the fab can do better with machines than third-world laborers?  Perhaps design and development can go straight to engineering and then machining?  The notion of advancing to a state of skilled labor resting on a threshold of automation really releases the ol’ endorphins in my Capitalism gland.

Lee Dronick

Ross my concern is disruption of goods and parts coming out of China and the possibility of malware, spyware or a backdoor built into electronics. Not to mention providing employment for our own workers and those in the countries of our more loyal friends. Of course I am looking at the situation as a retired military man and maybe I am just being overly cautious.

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