Apple has tried to pry itself away from relying on Samsung as a supplier over the past couple of years, although it’s often found that companies with Samsung’s prowess at mass-producing components are hard to find. The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple is still trying to figure out ways to rely less on Samsung, however, and has signed an agreement with supplier TSMC to supply microprocessors for its iPhones and other gadgets going forward.
This is particularly significant because, as the Journal notes, Samsung has been Apple’s sole provider of microprocessors ever since the company first launched the iPhone all the way back in 2007. The move is also expected to give a huge boost to TSMC — analysts cited by the Journal estimate that Apple’s microprocessor orders will account for a full 10% of its revenues.
Apple and Samsung have had an often rocky relationship for several years. Even though Apple is still very reliant on Samsung for components, the two companies have gone head-to-head in both the marketplace and the courtroom. Samsung has emerged as Apple’s biggest competitor when it comes to high-end smartphone sales and Apple has repeatedly sued Samsung for allegedly infringing on Apple’s patents. Throughout it all, however, the two companies have maintained a strong business relationship even though Apple is always on the hunt for different suppliers.