Reports are saying Apple has actually done it - Cupertino's gone and acquired flash controller and SSD startup Anobit for $500m as expected. So Apple, the maker of the Jesus phone, will have a base in the Holy Land. Anobit's Herzliya headquarters will likely become Apple's Research and Development centre in Israel. Anobit's …
Funny, I communications biz in the one place on earth they do not communicate!
Aha.. the mud clears.
The rumours of Apple *setting up* an R&D operation in Israel now make more sense. They're not. They're acquiring an R&D operation that's already in Israel.
The biggest signal of a new post-Jobs era will be if they allow this R&D to continue outside of Cupertino. Jobs was notorious for needing every part of the product development on site, even when it made no financial or operational sense to do so.
Incidentally, Apple have been OEM suppliers through subsidiaries before: Apple used to be a major shareholder in ARM Holdings Ltd, at a time when ARM were supplying designs for Palm - the competitor for Apple's still-current Newton line. Selling that 40%+ of ARM kept Apple afloat during the mid 1990s, when Microsoft was eating their lunch.
As I said
When this story first broke last week, the more you can control your supply chain, the less it controls you.
This is interesting though, Apple can simply buy the entire output.
Who else is making this tech? I can't seem to find anything specific.
Grave turningly bad move
I really don't think this is a good move. Commodity component manufacturers should be not be absorbed into the likes of Apple. Anobit's technology seems sexy now but the risk is that in 18 or 24 mths it's eclipsed by the next new, new thing,
Great point... but not that great :)
Apple is buying a company who specializes in low-power, high-efficiency write leveling and flash chip power controlling technology. While the actual tech they're buying is nifty now and is certainly going to experience a limited life space, it allows Apple to cover a few important things.
1) Build the tech directly into the A6 or A7 die.
2) Cater the algorithms to iOS and whichever filesystem Apple chooses to use at the time. In addition, they could add the file system encryption support directly to the core.
3) They got themselves what appears to be a highly functional and highly skilled set of VLSI designers who specialize in implementing high performance block based storage algorithms and have proven they can go from concept to market.
Yeh... the tech will be useless when NAND is replaced with alternative memory technologies... but the money they save until then will certainly pay for the $500 million and the ability to eliminate more components from their design and decrease power consumption will certainly be gravy on top of that.
So... while you have a great point... remember that this is a huge step forward for Apple... hell, with the proper designs and planning and support from chip fabs... they could probably bake the flash right into the processor package.
Now lets see what they do about the RAM components.
Exit Microsoft - Enter Apple
Apple is the top shop!
Now open a store
Good! Now Apple can dump their incompetent and ridiculously expensive distributor in Israel, iDigital, and open a bonafide Apple store in Israel.
Cut out the middleman, Apple. It's only harming your reputation.
Voice from above:
"We shall bring ALL our people to our space ship in sunny CA, now!"