Apple to partner with Global Foundries in A-series chip production

New reports say that apple will add a second U.S. chip fabrication plant to its supply chain, partnering with California-based GlobalFoundries to produce A-series processors at a new $6 billion facility in upstate New York.

Apple A7

The “floorplan” of Apple’s latest A-series processor, the A7. | Credit: Chipworks

Current Apple fab partner Samsung will help to ramp up production at the new facility, according to a report monday afternoon from the Albany Times Union. The site, in Malta, New York, was rumored to be in the running for a slot in Apple’s supply chain late last year.

Logistical details of the arrangement between Apple, Samsung, and Global Foundries are not known, and a GlobalFoundries spokesman declined to comment when asked by the Times Union. Samsung is currently the sole supplier of A-series processors for Apple, fabricating the chips at a plant in Austin, Texas. 

Many of the earlier rumors swirling around the Malta deal pegged Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), rather than Global Foundries, as Apple’s partner. At the time, the venture was thought to go by the codename “Project Azalea.”

As late as last month, whispers that Samsung had lost as much as half of the contract for Apple’s purported next-generation “A8” processor to TSMC were circulating from sources in Samsung’s home turf of South Korea. It is possible, though unlikely, that both Samsung and TSMC could be involved in the New York deal.

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