CNET, citing a Korean newspaper, reports that the two tech giants have reached a new chip deal. Samsung will apparently supply the next generation of A9 chips based on the 14nm process node starting in 2015. The report comes from a reputable source, but it is still a bit strange. The A9 core is practically obsolete regardless of the process, but it might still be used in a new low-cost iPhone. There are also rumours that Apply might use an A7-based chip clocked at 3GHz for the new device, but the reports should be taken with a grain of salt.
In related news, Apple is reportedly talking to Globalfoundries as well. GloFo has some unused 28nm capacity and needless to say it would love to see Apple as a client. SemiAccurate recently reported that Apple has practically bought into a GloFo fab.
Apple has the cash, it wouldn’t have much trouble buying a fab, but the real question is whether it has much to gain from such a deal? It might just be posturing, a way of putting more pressure on other suppliers and getting even better prices. Having every chipmaker on the planet vying for a piece of its business might be just as good for Apple as getting a stake in a fab, perhaps even better.