When it comes to the Apple versus Samsung duel, any small victory on either side is amplified, with each respective party always eager to celebrate one-upmanship in terms of sales, advertising, or general popularity polls. But with heavyweight chip-maker TSMC having now taken a large portion of Apple’s next-gen microprocessor orders – a hardware component that Samsung has long since been the main provider of – the Cupertino company just dealt its arch nemesis a major blow worthy of a quiet fist-pump.

TSMC, or the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., plays a big part in keeping the mobile scene afloat. Along with supplying the components for Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint sensor, TSMC is also at the forefront of supplying the SoCs that keep smartphones and tablets running, and in an overt attempt to decrease its reliance on Samsung, Apple has apparently made a sizeable order from the Taiwanese outfit in a move that’ll no doubt have leave the Korean company reeling.

It’s a rather strange scenario that despite constant courtroom battles over patent disputes between Apple and Samsung – the majority of which, it has to be said, have been instigated by the former – Apple has continued to lean upon Samsung in providing various components, particularly those pertaining to the iOS device range.

Despite the supply-side harmony, though, the animosity between two of the mobile game’s titanic figures has intensified in recent years, and although it makes perfect business sense for Apple to diversify its supply chain wherever possible, there’s no doubt that the conflict of interests has played a major part in Apple’s move to distance itself from Samsung in recent times.

In spite of the fact that TSMC will be enjoying a share of the Apple Pie, though, it should still be noted that Samsung will retain a sizeable stake in this capacity, and in actual fact, will continue to supplement a large chunk of Apple’s microprocessing requirements for the time being.

TSMC logo

The fact that TSMC is even in the frame, though, means that Apple can relieve Samsung of some of its duties, and if Tim Cook’s company continues in this vein, it mightn’t be too long before Samsung only accounts for a minor segment of Apple’s overall supply chain.

It hasn’t been established precisely how many chips TSMC will supply to Apple, but the take-home message from Apple to Samsung is, quite clearly, that the days of heavy reliance are very much numbered.

(Source: WSJ)

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