After beating Samsung in court over alleged infringements relating to the design of its products, Apple has started to cut back its orders on chips and displays made by the Korean electronics company, according to two separate reports from several high-profile media outlets.
reported today that Apple has been steadily cutting back its component orders from arch-rival Samsung “as it seeks to diversify its memory chip supply lines,” the latter publication specifically noted.
South Korea-based Samsung Electronics will continue to supply some parts for the next-generation iPhone (the iPhone 5), but a source indicated that these may be some of the last orders from Apple, as far as certain components are concerned.
The Korea Economic Daily
cites an unnamed industry source as saying that Apple is getting memory chips for the first batch of iPhone 5 from Japan's Toshiba Corp., Elpida Memory and Korea's SK Hynix.
“Samsung is still on the list of initial memory chip suppliers (for new iPhones). But Apple orders have been trending down and Samsung is making up for the reduced order from others, notably Samsung's handset business,” a source told Reuters.
As far as the batteries go, Apple is doing business with China's Amperex Technology Ltd and Japan's Panasonic Corp. The initial supply list also included Samsung SDI, according to the same Korea Economic Daily report.
Finally, the screens will be coming from LG Display, and other vendors. Apple’s reliance on Sharp Corp has become uncertain, as the Japanese display vendor has fallen behind schedule.
What Samsung is certain to continue to produce (at least for a while) is the A-series chip powering all of the iPhones and iPads.
The relationship between the two companies “[is] too important for either party to put at risk,” the Reuters report said.
It is also said that the Apple-Samsung fallout was related to a disagreement about pricing.