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Apple Outsources A5 Chip Manufacture ... To Texas

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the texas-visitor's-guide-free-on-request dept.

Businesses 330

Lindan9 writes "In a 9 billion dollar investment, Apple's A5 chips will now be produced in Austin, TX, in a new Samsung factory that is apparently 'the largest-ever foreign investment in Texas.'" According to the article, the factory's been churning out chips since the beginning of this month.

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Asia goes up! (4, Insightful)

InsightIn140Bytes (2522112) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411334)

US is now officially destination country for cheap outsourcing.

Re:Asia goes up! (4, Funny)

msauve (701917) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411350)

The 25 employees of the new automated plant will appreciate that fact.

Re:Asia goes up! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411382)

So will the hundreds in the local construction industry, those in the power industry, transport industry, and the local government who collect property tax.

Re:Asia goes up! (0)

InsightIn140Bytes (2522112) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411394)

As will the Asian investors and companies while they reap more profits and will soon dominate the world.

Multinational (4, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412210)

Are you claiming that only (or even mostly) citizens of East Asian countries own Samsung stock? Here's a hint: Multinational publicly traded corporations are called "multinational" because not only do they operate in multiple countries but they also have shareholders in multiple countries.

Re:Asia goes up! (5, Insightful)

msauve (701917) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411442)

Construction is temporal. We're trying to _reduce_ energy usage, believe it or not. A billion dollars worth of chips really isn't that much to transport. You're assuming they weren't given massive tax breaks to build the plant there (they were - 100%).

To be fair, it looks like this actually created 500-700 jobs. That's still not what people might expect from a $9 billion plant, so the point of my facetious comment stands.

Re:Asia goes up! (3, Insightful)

durrr (1316311) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411526)

The numbers of jobs created should be ~10 of "mostly useless emergency supervisors"
But of course, given the trend of politics-driven inflation and wage-stomping movement seen in general in the US you could probably create ~20000 jobs at $1/hour(counting 1970 equivalent USD) in a year or two.
China 2.0 bitches, enjoy nation-wide degeneration.

Re:Asia goes up! (4, Insightful)

Nutria (679911) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412178)

wage-stomping movement seen in general in the US

It's called Supply And Demand: when (a) the supply of labor jumped by 2 billion as the result of India and China turning their countries semi-capitalist and open to foreign investment, and (b) the demand for labor drops due to automation, the natural wage rate must and does drop like a stone. Combine this with the extra costs incurred from environmental and workplace safety laws, and it's no wonder that the number of industrial jobs in the US has plummeted.

The smart person accepts this fact and adjusts him/herself accordingly (either by living with a lower wage or doing what it takes to have a higher-paying job).

Re:Asia goes up! (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38412450)

The article states that there are ~1100 jobs created out of this. I work in the semiconductor manufacturing industry (major competitor to Samsung) and can tell you that of those 1100 jobs my estimate is that >600 of those are college graduates (engineers of some kind mostly) and I would estimate that there are probably ~100 PhDs. With a state of the art facility that cost $9bn you can bet that there are lots of technical hurdles that are constantly springing up especially as new products are being manufactured in the factory. The part of the manufacturing that requires lots of low cost, low skilled labor is the assembly portion which is still occurring in Asia but wafer manufacturing, especially on a cutting edge process, requires lots of very technically skilled labor. This is why Samsung built their wafer factory in Austin where there is a large supply of technical college graduates.

"To be Fair" (5, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411544)

Construction is temporal. We're trying to _reduce_ energy usage, believe it or not.

You might be. Countries or states that would like a growing economy are not among those interesting in giving in to entropy.

To be fair, it looks like this actually created 500-700 jobs.

One would think being "Fair" would be to quote the jobs figure from the original Reuters article - 1100 for just the chips, never mind the flash - instead of a number pulled from thin air but put forth as fact.

You go ask your local chamber of commerce if they care at all about 1100+ technical jobs appearing where they are.

Re:Asia goes up! (4, Insightful)

marnues (906739) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411692)

I'm not reducing my energy. I'm using it smarter and expecting it cleaner. I have no plans to give up my electrical appliances, nor will I unless the need actually arises. And that need will not come.

Re:Asia goes up! (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412170)

That need might well come if your power bills go up 3000% in the next 10 years, your disposable income plummets and the cost of pointless new gadgets (phones, tablets, consoles) rises exponentially. You'd give it all up in a heartbeat.

Re:Asia goes up! (2)

rtaylor (70602) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412278)

Even solar is lower than that.

Sure, might have to run the dish/clothes washers during the day but I'll gladly pay $10 per load for each of them.

and peopel will want nuke plants more (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412368)

Nuclear power is your friend. mr burns

Re:Asia goes up! (1)

Ruie (30480) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411798)

To be fair, it looks like this actually created 500-700 jobs. That's still not what people might expect from a $9 billion plant, so the point of my facetious comment stands.

But, suppose each person costs the company $200K on average (with the salary being $100K), then each employee is responsible for $20M worth of equipment - a factor of 100 over what they are paid in a year. This is actually quite reasonable and what you would expect for the society.

It also makes sense from economic standpoint - the equipment depreciates and the cost to have an employee maintain it can be factored in. If it is substantially more than 1% then you are more in the service business rather than manufacturing.

Re:Asia goes up! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38412478)

People love to give Texas shit but the fact remains, Texas is the number two technology state. Austin, Dallas, and Houston all have very strong technology bases. Austin is a party-college town ranging from old money to nude hippies. Dallas has old money to new money with lots of plastic, wanna be New York style and attitude. And while the later may sound like a negative, if you like living in a big city with lots of empty, shallow, keep up with the Jones-materialism, as is the massive pull of New York City, Dallas will very much speak to you; or scream at you if you miss New York. Without a doubt, if you like people and technology, Austin and Houston are very strong technology cities; whereby from a weather perspective, Austin slightly pulls ahead in the running.

Re:Asia goes up! (2)

erroneus (253617) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411974)

This is Texas we're talking about. The property tax will likely be at the "agricultural rate" because they will have a few head of cattle living on the manufacturing campus like Exxon does... in fact, they'll probably be Texas Longhorn cattle and they will end up with a tax credit.

When Apple starts moving the actual assembly of their iDevices to the US, I might be more impressed. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad to see SOMETHING being made in the U.S. and I hope more is made here too.

Re:Asia goes up! (1)

Drakino (10965) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412108)

Their Mac Pro towers are assembled in the US (as seen on the bottom label from a 2008, 2009 and 2010 model). I wonder how much of that workstation cost is assembly, vs the high priced server level hardware.

Re:Asia goes up! (4, Insightful)

grainofsand (548591) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412372)

I have been to manufacturing centres (we used to call them factories) and I can promise you we do not want them back nor the jobs.

When ever I hear someone talking about the loss of manufacturing jobs, especially no-skill or low-skill jobs, I ask them if they hope their own children will one day work in such a job. They always say no.

Working in a no-skill / low-skill job in a factory is awful. We should not want any part of our labour market filling jobs like those.

Re:Asia goes up! (2)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411976)

local government who collect property tax.

The standard sweetheart deal is no property tax for the first 5-50 years depending on how good the negotiators are on either side.

Then usually the plant/stadium/etc. is "getting old" and a new one "needs" to be built somewhere. Maybe somewhere that's willing to offer a tax break...

Granted they do help create jobs in an area, but it's sort of foolishly wasted on certain things. A supermarket, for instance, will never really go away - it will just likely be bought out by a competitor. One building in my neighborhood has changed hands four times in the last 30 or so years. First it was an A&P. Then, Pathmark had no problem buying a ready-made store. Then Pathmark moved to a bigger lot next door (way bigger, in fact - they had it purpose-built for their store) and National Wholesale Liquidators came in. Then NWL went bankrupt and now Save Smart occupies the space.

No matter how you cut it, I can practically guarantee that you'll get 50+ years out of a good grocery store - even if it isn't always with the same owner. It is way easier to attract A&P, Kroger, Stop & Shop, etc. to come and build a store in an empty building than it is to get a sports team to come in and occupy an empty stadium.

Re:Asia goes up! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38412474)

and the local government who collect property tax.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Good one!

Re:Asia goes up! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411450)

You have no idea how a semiconductor foundry operates, do you.

Re:Asia goes up! (1)

JustOK (667959) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411958)

half as fast as a conductor factory?

Re:Asia goes up! (5, Interesting)

samkass (174571) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411474)

1,100 high-tech employees on the processor side of the fab, and more than that on the flash memory side. A $3.6 billion construction project. Yes, I'd say they will appreciate it.

Re:Asia goes up! (4, Informative)

Pax681 (1002592) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411782)

1,100 high-tech employees on the processor side of the fab, and more than that on the flash memory side. A $3.6 billion construction project. Yes, I'd say they will appreciate it.

not just that if you actually look it's more

The 1.6 million square foot factory cost $3.6bn, but the total investment is closer to $9bn, according to Austin Chamber of Commerce, making it the largest-ever foreign investment in Texas. According to Reuters, the fab ramped up to full production at the beginning of December.

that's a fair wad of cash injected into the local economy and not an investment to be sniffed at at all.
Reuters has an article on it HERE [reuters.com]

Re:Asia goes up! (1)

Trepidity (597) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411862)

Depends on how much of that was actually paid for by Texas with "incentives" to bring the plant, I suppose.

Re:Asia goes up! (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412020)

My enthusiasm for parsing legalese waned too quickly to look up all the details for all the involved parties; but it looks like Samsung is certainly not being sent away empty-handed...

The city of Austin's agreement [austin.tx.us] is one part, and looks like some rather nice tax 'incentives' and procedural waivers(two decades worth of municipal tax breaks, a variety of free infrastructure upgrades). Apparently the county, state, and school district(?!?) also have their own packages.

I, for one, would like to thank the citizens of Texas for subsidizing my semiconductor purchases!

Re:Asia goes up! (2)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411808)

[snark] What? Ten of them are from the U.S! Considering the tax payers only had to pay 80% of the cost of the plant (bonds) to get them to hire that many it isn't
THAT bad of a deal. Besides. Perry, through friends, made a nice chunk of cash. [/snark]

Re:Asia goes up! (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412060)

Thankfully, government 'job creation' spending is neither wasteful, nor evil, no matter what the cost ends up being, even if extraordinarily larger than the salary(just ask the local chamber of commerce to haul out the multiplier effect and solve the little numerical problem), if you launder the funds through a corporation.

Direct payments are, depending on how you structure them, either wasteful big government bloat, or evil welfare; but obtaining them through 'public-private partnerships' or 'development incentives' is a fine and salubrious custom. Plus, it is equally acceptable to those who would rather not have the state turned into a feed-trough for assorted multinationals and those who would prefer that the competitive market not be distorted by substantial subsidies to some players but not others!

Just be glad that it actually produces something, unlike a shiny new stadium...

Re:Asia goes up! (1)

NicknameOne (2525178) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411558)

Didn't you have anything to say that bashes Google in this thread? I'm afraid you won't be getting your 99 cents this week. -- Your boss

Re:Asia goes up! (4, Funny)

should_be_linear (779431) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411586)

Wall Street: "$9b here? Are you fcking nuts?".
Samsung: "We believe in american workforce!"
Wall Street: "OK, so you ARE crazy... what the hell is wrong with China"
Samsung: "No way, they wouldn't follow even basic environmental and working conditions. We are getting out of there"
Wall Street: "NOOOOOOO!"

Re:Asia goes up! (5, Funny)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411988)

And from the inevitable bootleg Chinese dub with bad English subtitling:

Wall Street: "$9 thousand million dolars?!?".

Samsung: "We make believe American workforce is believe!"

Wall Street: "Your brain works no good anymore. China is glorious and wonderful!"

Samsung: "No left, they wouldn't lead to good empirical working conditions. We are leaving timely now."

Wall Street: "DO NOT WANT"

Re:Asia goes up! (2)

allanw (842185) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411780)

There's semiconductor fab companies that manufacture the wafers in the USA, but still ship them to Asia for packaging and testing, which requires less labor skill and investment. See this Micron video for instance: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kvf29R7nXlM [youtube.com]

Cheap labor (2, Funny)

Animats (122034) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411336)

Texas just provides the cheap labor. They don't have the technology.

Re:Cheap labor (4, Informative)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411534)

Heh... Says you...

TI
Freescale
AMD
IBM
Qualcomm

These and more have more than a piddling engineering presence in Austin.

Re:Cheap labor (3, Informative)

Pharmboy (216950) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411594)

Dell and HP are also Texas corporations, which are two giants in producing end products for the entire globe. Of course, Dell finishes their stuff in Mexico (which is still better than China).

the funniest thing about your post (1)

decora (1710862) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411624)

you were trying to prove that Texas is a technology hub, by rattling off various tech companies in Austin.

you didn't mention Dell.

that makes me laugh all kinds of horrible laughs that i am kind of embarassed to be laughing.

Re:the funniest thing about your post (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412074)

Dell is, arguably, more of a logistics and integration company than a tech company(which isn't necessarily a bad thing, they are pretty decent at it, and somebody has to do it)...

They are pretty good at providing a one-stop-shop for a variety of Intel and AMD silicon, with supporting chips from a number of other vendors, mounted on a standardized set of boards from a few pacific rim OEM shops, and stuffed into plastic boxes in Mexico according to your order. Juggling that worldwide logistics effort is no mean feat; but they don't mix much in the way of dell technology into the sauce. It's like fedex with driver updates...

Logistics (2)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412274)

Juggling that worldwide logistics effort is no mean feat; but they don't mix much in the way of dell technology into the sauce. It's like fedex with driver updates

You call Dell a "logistics" operation and then compare it to FedEx? I was waiting for the UPS punchline [youtube.com] .

Re:Cheap labor (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411850)

Texas just provides the cheap labor. They don't have the technology.

Get real! We're talking about Austin here.

It's like saying that Portland is a part of Oregon.

Re:Cheap labor (3, Insightful)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412102)

That's not so bad. I think the biggest problem will be the language barrier. Texans have a peculiar version of English that could potentially lead to millions of dollars wasted when the managers in Cupertino try to communicate exactly what they want over the phone...

I live in Texas (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411342)

yay, jerbs?

Re:I live in Texas (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411724)

Meanwhile some where in China "They took our jerbssssss"

Samsung... (4, Interesting)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411358)

The same company they're suing for imitating (int their eyes) the same product they're going to make in the new factory? Strange bedfellows indeed.

Re:Samsung... (-1, Flamebait)

thejuggler (610249) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411420)

Strange indeed that Samsung was able to create a totally new and unique product that magically looks and feels just like an iPhone and iPad. It's more than just the CPU that Samsung has been making for Apple. And Samsung claims their products were invented by themselves.

Re:Samsung... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411444)

Unlike say... Apple... who made an mp3 player and a phone and a tablet... and then act as if they invented them.

Re:Samsung... (3, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411472)

Nope. Samsung used somebody's else's operating system (Android) and put it in a form factor which:
a) Had been done before Apple did it
b) Is pretty obvious - the only real variation possible is the roundness of the corners, everything else follows function (it's a screen!)

Re:Samsung... (3, Interesting)

Pi1grim (1956208) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411584)

Ah, come on already. Enough with the "all the phones have similar design" argument. Put side by side iPhone 3G(S), iPhone 4, any HTC smartphone, any Sony-Ericsson smartphone, Nokia smartphone and Samsung Galaxy (I and 2) then see try to match similar looking phones. Somehow only Samsung managed to make their phone look painfully like the iPhone.

Re:Samsung... (5, Informative)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411622)

When you can site 2001: A Space Oddessy as prior art, that gives Samsung license to tell Apple to go eat a bowl of dicks. Apple? innovators? My ass. They sell marked-up shiny.

http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2011-08/24/samsung-2001-prior-art [wired.co.uk]

According to Samsung, director Stanley Kubrick had the idea for tablet computers about four decades ago, in the 1968 sci-fi epic, 2001: A Space Odyssey. A clip from the film (available on YouTube, Samsung hastens to add), shows astronauts eating while watching a TV show on flat, personal computers.

The Galaxy Tab maker argues that Kubrick's forward-thinking tablet has, "an overall rectangular shape with a dominant display screen, narrow borders, a predominately flat front surface, a flat back surface (which is evident because the tablets are lying flat on the table's surface), and a thin form factor."

Re:Samsung... (2)

nightfell (2480334) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412006)

And that display from 2001 would not infringe on the iPad.

Or put differently, even Samsung's lawyers wouldn't have had any trouble pointing out the 2001 device from an iPad or a Galaxy Tab.

Re:Samsung... (0)

ShakaUVM (157947) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411748)

>>only Samsung managed to make their phone look painfully like the iPhone.

Apple doctored the comparison photographs to make the Galaxy look more like their products than it actually was. Google it.

Re:Samsung... (1)

NatasRevol (731260) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411870)

Yet Samsung's own lawyers couldn't tell them apart. In real life.

Re:Samsung... (1)

sqlrob (173498) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412192)

From 10 feet

Re:Samsung... (2)

luis_a_espinal (1810296) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412204)

Yet Samsung's own lawyers couldn't tell them apart. In real life.

And that's because the lawyers were incompetent, not because the products were reasonably indistinguishable from one another.

Re:Samsung... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411944)

yeah yeah yeah sure, you're right but so motherfucking what? it's still just some motherfucking curvature on some motherfucking plastic rectangle. as long as they dont claim the samsung to be an apple the heavily inspired looks should not be criminal.

Re:Samsung... (-1)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411616)

What a lot of bollocks. Phones and tablets didn't look like that before iPhone and iPad.

Re:Samsung... (3, Insightful)

nightfell (2480334) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411998)

Nope. Samsung used somebody's else's operating system (Android) and put it in a form factor which:
a) Had been done before Apple did it
b) Is pretty obvious - the only real variation possible is the roundness of the corners, everything else follows function (it's a screen!)

It's not the form factor that Apple is suing over, it's the industrial design of a specific implementation of that form factor. Apple has not sued, threatened to sue, or otherwise made any sort of huff about the dozens of other tablets that have been around both before and after the iPad, just those that bear a striking resemblance to the iPad.

The Galaxy Tab is a near clone. Apple is right to sue over it if they hold their own design to be distinctive (which it is). This isn't about a rectangle, rounded corners, or black borders, it's about a unique collection of attributes that is immediately recognizable as an iPad.

Re:Samsung... (4, Informative)

Solandri (704621) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412342)

In the U.S., design patents can only be granted for "ornamental" features. i.e. features which serve no functional purpose. The Coca-Cola bottle is the archetypical example. Making that bottle that shape serves no function, it's completely ornamental.

In that regard, flat, rectangular, and rounded corners are all functional, which is why Apple was denied the injunction they sought against Samsung in the U.S. The color of the bezel could be regarded as ornamental, but with black, white, and silver being the most common choices, I seriously doubt any design patent based on a black bezel would stand. If Apple striped it a certain way, that might qualify. The only other design patent-worthy aspect of the Apple's complaint I can think of is the radius of the rounded corners. But that can easily be circumvented by using rounded corners with a slightly different radius.

And by the way, the appearance of the iPad from the front is a near-clone of a Samsung digital picture frame [engadget.com] released in 2006. Be careful who you accuse of copying whom.

Re:Samsung... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411476)

Samsung did the only part that deserves any respect.

Re:Samsung... (5, Insightful)

bjwest (14070) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411564)

It doesn't matter how the damn thing looks. Every friggin LCD TV manufactured since the dawn of LCD TVs look and feel the same. If it weren't for the glowing 'Sony' emblem on mine, I wouldn't be able to tell the difference between it and a Vizo, Samsung, or any other brand sitting on the shelf next to each other. Ditto for pretty much every LCD monitor, as well. If you're stupid enough to buy a Samsung tablet, thinking you're getting an iPad, then you deserve neither. Caveat emptor, you stupid "consumer". I'm a customer, and I look at what I'm purchasing to make sure it's what I want.

Just because something is black with rounded corners, doesn't mean it's patentable. I hope Apple gets their asses handed to them soon over their bull shit patents.

Re:Samsung... (2)

Cardcaptor_RLH85 (891550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411552)

The only part that Apple is sourcing from this Samsung plant is the A5 processor. I don't think that any Android phone or tablet uses this chip so that's not the issue at all.

Re:Samsung... (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411668)

Maybe it's a cunning trap!

More seriously it is probably a case of having the contracts signed long ago, and it is only for the fabrication (not design). Still seems somewhat risky.

Then again Samsung always make sure their flagship products have a better CPU than Apple's, and the A5 is looking a pretty ordinary these days. In short they can already easily compete on specs, it is just the legal wrangling and Apple's massive lifestyle marketing techniques that are a challenge.

Re:Samsung... (2)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411920)

That seems to happen a lot with these big east Asian electronics firms, they get so big they end up competing with themselves. Look at Sony, they used to(and maybe still do?) manufacture a lot of the parts that went into Apple computers such as the battery, while at the same time competing with Apple in both the laptop and the personal media player fields...... Though Samsung would be wise to make sure they don't end up going down the same path that Sony did, i.e. get so big and have so many conflicting goals that they end up losing a lot of their core business to smaller and more nimble competitors.

It's really not that strange. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411938)

Business relationships among large corporations are not so simplistic as slashdotters like to assume.

1)
Pre existing contracts are not usually nullified by new lawsuits unless specified in the terms of said contract.

2)
Large companies, such as Samsung, often have multiple business units that operate mostly independently and may or may not care, or even know details of, legal action underway in another business unit. There are even examples (Sony and Fox come to mind.) of one division of a company suing another division of the same corporation.

3)
Assumptions made by slashdotters about the morality notwithstanding; among companies past a certain size, and both Apple and Samsung qualify, lawsuits (and especially patent lawsuits) don't imply malice or hard feelings of any particular kind. They're simply negotiation or competition by alternate means.

Re:Samsung... (1)

Smurf (7981) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412246)

The same company they're suing for imitating (in their eyes) the same product they're going to make in the new factory? Strange bedfellows indeed.

True but it's a mistake that's not so hard to make [imgur.com] .

Damned both ways? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411364)

Dear America, do you want to work or not?

Re:Damned both ways? (4, Insightful)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411576)

1. Destroy economy so wages are depressed
2. U.S. now source of cheap labor
3. Best of both worlds - outsourced wages with domestic location
4. Profit!
5. Rich get richer, poor get poorer
6. Repeat as desired

Headline allusion error (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411366)

It's not Apple that made the $9b investment - Samsung did. The headline to the news entry suggests that it was otherwise. Grammer is so hard i kno lol!

Re:Headline allusion error (1)

AmberBlackCat (829689) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412122)

I'd like to hear them explain how, for chips meant to be used in the USA, Samsung decided it would be more practical to build a factory here. But every American company decided it would be cheaper to use factories elsewhere and have them shipped here. It kind of seems like there's nothing impractical about having a factory here. They just want to make sure no American company builds anything.

Re:Headline allusion error (1)

luis_a_espinal (1810296) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412242)

I'd like to hear them explain how, for chips meant to be used in the USA, Samsung decided it would be more practical to build a factory here. But every American company decided it would be cheaper to use factories elsewhere and have them shipped here. It kind of seems like there's nothing impractical about having a factory here. They just want to make sure no American company builds anything.

Offshoring/outsourcing overseas has always been about shifting costs overseas in the name of efficiency, quality or even profit. It has always been about reducing costs to increase the pockets of those who sell the idea of outsourcing, everything else be damned. I know it sounds like a slogan, but that's what makes it terrifying because it is true. That's the type of mercenary mentality that has been cultivated in our business ruling classes for the last 2 decades.

You will not see that in the Toyotas, Mercedes-Benz and Samsungs of the world where the choice to build a factory here or there are actually strategical and tactical, with actual business considerations( quality, cost, ship-to-market, etc) driving these decisions.

I for one welcome... (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411392)

I for one welcome our new Korean overlords.

Irony (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411400)

Weren't they just SUING them? Now they want a Samsung factory making chips for them?

So, if Samsung wasn't anywhere near your products and was supposedly copying your designs, what will happen now that you're getting them to make chips for you?

Or perhaps now that Apple's chips will be produced by a Samsung factory, the next time they want to sue Samsung, they can just say..."well, our chips were right there in front of their noses...so easy to copy!"

The bottom line: I can't imagine there isn't some ulterior motive behind this otherwise counterintuitive move...

Re:Irony (5, Insightful)

Ixokai (443555) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411562)

I don't know why I'm replying to an AC, but--

Err, Samsung has been one of Apple's major suppliers for a long time now, in the billions of dollars range. They've been making a huge chunk of the chips that go into everything for years and years-- long before any of these lawsuits started.

There's nothing counter-intuitive about it. Apple is one of Samsung's largest customers and has been for ages.

The lawsuit from Apple's side is a design issue, not functional: nearness to the product is irrelevant. They aren't suing about how chips work or are made: its design from an artistic/aesthetic POV, not design from an architectural or engineering POV, that they're suing over. (I'm not defending the lawsuits or the existence of design patents, just noting the difference)

Re:Irony (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411734)

Whether it's physical design or structural design is irrelevant, Apple still has the predisposition to sue and does this regularly, making it inherently risky to deal with them on such a close level. Why? Well, how far was Samsung from Apple when Apple had accused them of stealing the artistic ideas for their product? Now, Samsung's entering a deal with them to create chips for them, right? They're no going to be in each other's back yards. So if Samsung were to produce something even *remotely* similar to the chips they're being contracted to make, they're done for in court. They can't argue it's just coincidence, that somehow they came up with similar ideas but that the idea wasn't stolen because they'll be manufacturing the chips. Meanwhile, those types of coincidences are actually possible and different companies can honestly end up reaching similar conclusions even if they're halfway across the world from each other and never share ideas (this phenomenon has been shown in regards to other technologies). That's why this is counterintuitive. They're entering into an agreement where they now need to be extra, extra careful in all the designs they produce since they can't merrily argue coincidence anymore -- even if it was coincidence -- because who would believe them?

Real world blows Apple Hater mind - news at 11 (4, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411582)

Weren't they just SUING them? Now they want a Samsung factory making chips for them?

In the Real World, relationships are way more complex than one headline or story the media loves to harp on. Samsung is producing chips now which means Apple was talking to them about that something like two years ago...

Businesses are composed of many different units and the guys who make the chips are about as far removed from the Galaxy Tab as a whale is from an owl.

Re:Real world blows Apple Hater mind - news at 11 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411740)

"First you wanna kill me, now you wanna kiss me. Blow. "
- Army of Darkness

Re:Irony (1)

istartedi (132515) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411986)

Lawsuits are just a way for lawyers to collect taxes without using the government as a middleman.

Will make no difference (1)

Meshach (578918) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411408)

Judging from the popularity of Apple / Samsung products that are made in Asia I do not see the move to America making a difference.

At least Austin should be free of floods . . . (2)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411460)

. . . so they won't have to worry about Thailand-like floods stopping the production. At least if they stay away from the lakes and rivers . . . or what is left of the lakes and rivers.

Austin also has plenty of other high-tech companies around. But that air conditioning bill will be mighty high . . .

Although I seem to remember that Intel started building something there, but stopped went the Internet bubble busted. The local folks called empty frame. "Intel NOT inside . . . "

But if this here factory is already bakin' chips . . . that's sumtin' different.

Re:At least Austin should be free of floods . . . (1)

Elbart (1233584) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411502)

Isn't Texas one of the high-risk-targets of hurricanes?

Re:At least Austin should be free of floods . . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411524)

Austin is far enough in not to be severely impacted by hurricanes. Would actually welcome it since we need rain due to severe drought.

Re:At least Austin should be free of floods . . . (1)

mattgoldey (753976) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411530)

The Gulf coast maybe, but not Austin.

Re:At least Austin should be free of floods . . . (1)

eudas (192703) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411550)

Not in Austin. That's more down on the coastline, 3.5-4 hr away.

Re:At least Austin should be free of floods . . . (1)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411560)

Isn't Texas one of the high-risk-targets of hurricanes?

Not Austin. We are an evacuation destination for Houston ;-). A few years ago, a hurricane caused enough panic in Austin for people to strip store shelves for supplies, which is completely retarded considering how far inland we are. Wherever you go, there are stupid people.

Re:At least Austin should be free of floods . . . (1)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412082)

Just your usual US pay-to-play political donations ect.

Not fair to Texas (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411548)

I know that Texas probably appears to be a foreign country to people from California, but there's no need to treat the state like third world country.

I was suprised (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411660)

a few weeks ago when I ordered some ram from newegg, it's said made in USA when I got it. And yes, works great.

Texas is still a..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411706)

third world country.... They still execute the mentally ill there, and have you seen the nutjobs that come from there? Just look at GW Bush and Rick Perry...

Re:Texas is still a..... (2, Funny)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412038)

third world country.... They still execute the mentally ill there, and have you seen the nutjobs that come from there? Just look at GW Bush and Rick Perry...

I thought you said they executed the mentally ill.

Samsung, not Apple. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411746)

Odd how the article seems to give Apple all the credit, for what is apparently a Samsung investment.

Re:Samsung, not Apple. (1)

Drakino (10965) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412124)

Apple created the demand, and Samsung is the company that can meet the demand Apple has created. Credit is fine to apply to both companies, not just one or the other.

Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38411772)

You will know we are in a serious depression when manufacturing really comes back to the US.

Re:Well (1, Interesting)

couchslug (175151) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412260)

"You will know we are in a serious depression when manufacturing really comes back to the US."

You know when we don't price our labor out of the market we get more investment.

Bridgestone, Continental, MTU, BMW all invest in the US because it makes sense as their labor prices rise and ours become affordable.

'Need to work on our math skills. (1)

lance_of_the_apes (2300548) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411826)

1.6 million square feet is a lot more than nine football fields.

Production in the US??? (0)

lennier1 (264730) | more than 2 years ago | (#38411948)

Shouldn't they prefer parts which actually work?

So I'll be buying me an apple. (1)

approachingZero (1365381) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412024)

Look. I'm more excited about this than Lohan showing up in Playboy. This is really good news.

it's just a chip. (1)

pbjones (315127) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412040)

It's the cheapest major part in the whole unit. cynical me says that is just a token gesture by Samsung, and may be just part of a deal to stop Apple shopping elsewhere.

Only 5 people will probably get it though but... (1)

LiroXIV (2362610) | more than 2 years ago | (#38412156)

I'm certain I know how Ghost will react to this one (well, he's this online political show guy I listen to. Basically, he's from Austin, a manly capitalist Texan, who keeps getting trolled on by 4chan-types)

Sony... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38412202)

So much for the saying "Because Caucasians are too damn tall" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQa4HHkhwVg [youtube.com]

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