Samsung's New Texas Factory for A5 Chip Production Now Fully Operational

Reuters reports that Samsung, Apple's manufacturing partner for a number of components in its iOS devices, has completed work on a new factory in Austin, Texas that is handling production of the A5 system-on-a-chip found in the iPhone 4S and iPad 2. Samsung had announced the $3.6 billion project in June 2010, but has not publicly admitted that the facility is dedicated to producing components for Apple.

The A5 processor - the brain in the iPhone 4S and iPad 2 - is now made in a sprawling 1.6 million square feet factory in Austin owned by Korean electronics giant Samsung Electronics, according to people familiar with the operation.

One of the few major components to be sourced from within the United States, the A5 processor is built by Samsung in a newly constructed $3.6 billion non-memory chip production line that reached full production in early December.

The report's source indicates that nearly all of the factory's production, which encompasses non-memory chips such as the A5, is dedicated to Apple. The new factory is said to have resulted in 1,100 new employees being brought on by Samsung, which also employees 2,400 employees at a NAND flash memory factory in Austin.

samsung austin facility
Samsung factory in Austin (Source: Austin American-Statesman)

Samsung's significant investment in Austin to provide Apple with chips for the iPad 2 and iPhone 4S signals the importance the company places on the supply relationship even as the two companies are locked in a global intellectual property dispute involving Apple's iOS devices and Samsung's own Android-based mobile hardware.

Apple had been said to be moving production of its future A6 and A7 chips for iOS devices to Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, but more recent reports have claimed that Apple will be sticking with Samsung for at least the A6 and that Samsung is already ramping up production of the A6 at the Austin facility.

With Samsung's Austin facility now fully online, the company appears poised to meet Apple's surging demand for iPhone and iPad products as it is already preparing for the next generations of those devices to land sometime next year, almost certainly to be led by the iPad 3 early in 2012.

Top Rated Comments

kaizenmx Avatar
126 months ago
The irony of this entire article and situation is off the chart...
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
SilianRail Avatar
126 months ago
A Korean company builds a chip factory in the Texas to be assembled into a product in China. This makes no sense to me just from the logistical complications, let alone the wage differences.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Oletros Avatar
126 months ago
Whats to keep samsung from copying all the tech for the new SOC and using it in oh.say. a new galaxy tab ?

:D:D:D:D:D

Yap, Samsung needs to copy SOC or processor technologies because they don't have any experience.

I like people making such ridiculous claims thinking the only one that knows nothing about all is Apple.

There must be a good place this bubble, but there are a real world outside
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Fairfax Avatar
126 months ago
Nice to see a tech company opening up a factory in the USA.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Oletros Avatar
126 months ago
Yup. Samsungs real good at making their own distinctive stuff.

:rolleyes:
Distinctive like Soc or processor technology? Yes, keep getting owned, is funny
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
stevemiller Avatar
126 months ago
Do people come here to post primarily as an outlet for their anger issues or something?

Mobile devices have become this strange surrogate for tribal warfare. Mind you I'm not saying to stop, it's bizarrely fascinating...
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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