|Apple and Samsung have announced that Apple is investing US$100 million into Samsung in order to help Samsung increase production of Samsung's TFT-LCD-flat panel displays. The investment will presumably give Apple first dibs on the new capacity for both their PowerBooks and the newly announced iBook. According to Apple:
Apple and Samsung today jointly announced that Apple will invest $100 million in Samsung to further expand Samsung's TFT-LCD flat-panel display production capacity. The investment is part of Apple's strategy to insure an adequate supply of TFT-LCD displays to meet the growing demand for Apple products.
"We are pleased to partner with Samsung to insure that Apple is on the cutting edge of flat panel display technology," said Steve Jobs, Apple's interim CEO. "With our new iBook and fast selling PowerBooks, Apple will need more flat displays than ever going forward."
"We are pleased that Apple has placed such confidence in Samsung's leading-edge technology," stated Y. W. Lee, president and CEO of Samsung Electronics' Semiconductor Business. "Samsung will use this investment to further accelerate the expansion of our TFT-LCD production to support Apple's growing needs."
The two companies did not announce how soon this investment might yield results.
The Mac Observer Spin: Isn't this cool? Apple is investing money in other companies! This is due in part to the strength of their cash and short term investments which ended the previous quarter at over US$3 billion. It is also a far cry from 2 years ago when Apple and Microsoft announced a US$150 million investment by MS into Apple in order to show the industry that Microsoft had "confidence" in Apple.
This could be a big step toward Apple finding the production capacity to produce enough of their products to continue to maintain or even grow their marketshare. We have been looking for signs on how Apple would be meeting future demand, and this could be the beginning (we hope so).
Apple - Samsung