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Oct 17, 2011

Samsung Ramps Up 28nm Apple A6 SoC Production Says Report

Chip and consumer electronics maker Samsung will reportedly ramp up production of the quad-core A6 processor designed by Apple for its next-generation mobile devices, according to information received by the Korea Times publication from an un-named Apple component suppliers.

According to the source, Samsung has won this contract in front of TSMC as the Taiwanese foundry wasn't able to stabilize the production of this chip, most probably due to the problems it faces with its 28nm fabrication node.

"Apple has been in talks with Samsung over shipment of its A6 quad-core mobile processor chips to be used in the next iPhone," said an Apple parts supplier based in Korea according to the report.

"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," the report quoted the executive as saying.

Apple wanted to step away from Samsung as the two companies are involved into a series of legal battles that target their smartphone and tablet devices.

The A6 chips that Samsung will start producing for Apple are destined to make their way into the next iteration of the Apple smartphone and may also arrive in the next-gen iPad device.

Information about this chip is scarce at this time, but we do know that it will feature four processing cores built on the ARM architecture as well as a powerful graphics core most probably based on a PowerVR design.

The system-on-a-chip (SoC) device will be manufactured using the 28nm fabrication process that, together with an improved power gating technology, is expected to bring power consumption down to the levels of today's single-core and dual-core smartphones. (via EETimes)

Samsung Answers Apple in Kind, Wants iPhone 4S Out of Australia

Samsung sues Apple in Australia over the latter's alleged infringement of three 3G patents in the making of the iPhone 4S, demanding a ban from Australian stores. 

Users probably know of the big battle that Apple and Samsung got embroiled in a while ago, after the former sued the latter over the Galaxy Tab. 

Seeing that Apple was seriously seeking the total exclusion of the tablet from every market it could complain in, Samsung eventually started to sue it as well. 

The result is a series of courtroom showdowns that, alas, Apple seems to have been getting the better part of the deal out of. 

After all, it actually managed to get the galaxy tab 10.1 banned not just in Germany, but also in Australia, not long ago. 

Apple also won a victory in the US, which means that the tablet could get banned there as well. 

That said, Samsung is preparing to appeal in those areas, but that doesn't mean it can't strike back in other ways. 

Indeed, the company is now hoping to gain an injunction against Apple's iPhone 4S, for violating three 3G patents. 

This is the same claim it made in Europe, when it asked that the item be banned in Italy and France. 
"Apple has continued to violate our patent rights and free ride on our technology," Samsung said. "We will steadfastly protect our intellectual property." 

It is unclear what will happen, but not too unclear, since Apple already won a victory against these same claims in the Netherlands. 

Meanwhile, Samsung also sued Apple in Japan, concerning one patent for HSPA-based 3G and three user interface patents. 

Again, the same patent system loopholes apply, so onlookers who hopes that the new law would get things to settle down on the legal level are in for a disappointment.


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