Apple has moved the production of its A5 processors to, wait for it, Texas. Here’s where things get even weirder. The chips are being fabricated by Samsung Electronics, but at a 1.6 million square foot factory in Austin. The factory is owned by Samsung. This should also be considered a bit of a rumor since neither Apple, nor Samsung, would confirm that the A5 chips are being made in Austin.
Poornima Gupta at Reuters:
[quote]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. Nearly all of the output of the non-memory chip production from the factory – which is the size of about nine football fields – is dedicated to producing Apple chips, one of the people said. Samsung also produces NAND flash memory chips in Austin.[/quote]
Before we get all excited about the potential of Apple moving some of its production stateside, it’s important to realize that Austin is a bit of a hotspot for semiconductor companies. Currently, Freescale Semiconductor, ARM, Intel, and AMD are all operating in the area. There’s a great deal of engineering talent in the area. It also makes you wonder if we’ll start seeing “Designed by Apple in Cupertino, Assembled in China, CPU’d in Austin” on the next round of mobile devices.