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Infineon deal would make Intel an iPhone component supplier

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
Intel is said to be close to a deal with Infineon's wireless chip unit, a purchase that would make Intel a major player in the smartphone market, and a component supplier for Apple's iPhone.

According to The Wall Street Journal, a deal between Intel and Infineon could be announced in a matter of days, with an asking price of $2 billion for the company's wireless chip division. Infineon makes the baseband chip found in Apple's iPhone.

Apple and Infineon have a strong partnership, in which the company is the sole baseband supplier for the iPhone, including the latest model, the iPhone 4. The company has supplied chipsets for the iPhone since it was first released in 2007.

Tension has existed between Apple and Intel since the iPhone maker opted to rely on ARM architecture for its smartphones. In 2008, Intel slammed the iPhone, claiming the device is not capable of accessing the "full Internet." Such functionality requires Intel-based architecture, the company said.

Apple has also entered into the chipmaking business, through key acquisitions of PA Semi for $278 million in 2008, and Intrinsity this year for $121 million. Those purchases set the stage for Apple to make its own custom A4 processor, based on the ARM architecture, found in the iPad and iPhone 4.

Intel has pushed its low-power, low-cost Atom processor for mobile devices, including smartphones, but the chips still cost more and use more power than their ARM competitors. The Atom was even pegged to be coming to Apple products in 2008, though it never came to be.
post #2 of 22
You have to skate to where the puck is going (as the Great One said).
post #3 of 22
For some reason I think Steve won't be happy about this turn of events.

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

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Get the lowdown on the coming collapse:  http://www.cbo.gov/publication/45010

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post #4 of 22
Intel phone home.
Where are we on the curve? We'll know once it goes asymptotic!
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Where are we on the curve? We'll know once it goes asymptotic!
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post #5 of 22
Apple seems already having set off for going with TriQuint. Which, in turn, now operates some earlier acquisition from Infineon.

P.S. And precisely because Apple's logistics division managed to forecast that and undertook everything being necessary to part with Infineon, their further deal with Intel seems being really real.

We mean Apple no harm.

People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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We mean Apple no harm.

People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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post #6 of 22
My take: won't happen

German companies generally buy other companies, but are rarely for sale themselves. It doesn't fit in the German culture and it may even lead to questions in the German government.
post #7 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

For some reason I think Steve won't be happy about this turn of events.

Probably not. But then again he might not care since his desktops are based on Intel offerings anyways.
post #8 of 22
Quote:
In 2008, Intel slammed the iPhone, claiming the device is not capable of accessing the "full Internet." Such functionality requires Intel-based architecture, the company said.

So PowerPC Macs couldn't access the full internet neither? What about SunOS running on SPARC processors?
post #9 of 22
It seems to be assumed that if Apple would not buy Infineon. it would have a negative impact on Apple.

Maybe, maybe not.

Sure, Apple should have some control of its sources, but too much vertical integration can also hurt.

More important, Apple should remain nimble. Apple should be able to shift in technology (e.g., shift from PowerPC to Intel tech for its PC, to ARM for its mobile products), or shift sources of parts (IBM-Motorola PowerPC to Intel, to NVidia, to AMD, or whatever may become the optimal source) or even change its manufacturing partners.

Such flexibility could not have been achieved had Apple invested so much of its ressources buying other companies to have sontrol of its "raw materials". As important, there is always a possibility that the technology of a company could be overtaken by another. What then would Apple do with its former costly investment?

Apple did buy some companies, but usually they are very small, one with experimental or trailblazing technologies, not established technologies. I have yet to read Apple buying a billion dollar company. [Maybe it will one day.]

Apple products cater to consumers (individuals and more recently companies). Apple has never been a company that manufactured products that would be used for other products by other companies. The exception to this rule was when Apple bought companies, e.g., PA Semi, because it could not find the product "parts" (and sources) that would fit their specifications for their consumer products.

CGC
post #10 of 22
Meh! the baseband chips control all the stuff the require an antenna. No biggie.
post #11 of 22
And Apple itself is always looking for very special deals. The toy should obligatorily be dirt cheap now and should at the same time promise the price will soar tenfold in the nearest future. Otherwise, Apple prefers to invest in real engineering.

We mean Apple no harm.

People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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We mean Apple no harm.

People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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post #12 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roos24 View Post

My take: won't happen

German companies generally buy other companies, but are rarely for sale themselves. It doesn't fit in the German culture and it may even lead to questions in the German government.

But in the music business they do: German Emagic (Logic) bought by Apple. German Steinberg (Cubase/Nuendo) bought by Yamaha (and the web: German Golive was aquired by Adobe some ten years ago)...
post #13 of 22
Intel hasn't bought them yet and Apple could make a bid. It would be the most expensive purchase Apple would have ever made (at least $2 billion). Apple should bid and take them in-house.
post #14 of 22
Wow, Intel is either deluded or arrogant if they say that the "full Internet" (whatever that means) requires Intel products! How about they try deliver low power processors that can beat the ARM Cortex on power consumption and speed instead of strong arming (no pun intended) their partners into buying Intel exclusively?

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #15 of 22
looks like intel is going to integrate the baseband into the CPU.
post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by ihxo View Post

looks like intel is going to integrate the baseband into the CPU.

I doubt it - high frequency analog signals and digital signals don't mix very well on the same piece of silicon.
post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

You have to skate to where the puck is going (as the Great One said).

How is buying an older company who's chips fuelled a mobile revolution that intel missed completely, "skating to where the puck is."

I don't see why intel even wants Infineon. Either they leave the company as it is which gets them virtually nothing, or they do some nefarious thing wherein they charge folks more money for the chips, or "integrate them with intel's offerings to provide more value" (that last line is business code for "screw over everyone else by making them only compatible with your gear" BTW).

This just seems like face-saving to me unless they are also going to buy ARM. ARM should probably have allowed the sale to Apple to protect themselves IMO. Microsoft has already bought an ARM licence equivalent to Apple's (you can bet they had to pay a lot more though), and intel has surely sized them up for a takeover already as well.
post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

You have to skate to where the puck is going (as the Great One said).

Yup. That's one way Intel can leave the legacy of the crap X86 architecture behind - by reinventing themselves
post #19 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

You have to skate to where the puck is going (as the Great One said).

I once saw him score from a blue line shot while falling down . The garden was silent for a full 20 sec.

9
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beatles
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beatles
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post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by 0yvind View Post

But in the music business they do: German Emagic (Logic) bought by Apple. German Steinberg (Cubase/Nuendo) bought by Yamaha (and the web: German Golive was aquired by Adobe some ten years ago)...

3 companies out of 4.3 million .


nice



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post #21 of 22
I am confused. But infineon chips has been dropped in the latest iphone 4.

So Why does AI report it is being used in every iPhone.
post #22 of 22
While Infineon's chips still power iPhone 3GS and the first generation of iPad, Apple has obviously undertaken all necessary measures to drop the dangerous dependency on the mentioned supplier in the future.
AI's piece has been written without deep knowledge of the matter and is --- as it often happens to be --- a misleading half-truth. An accurate problem insight should have driven the discussion in completely different direction.
Sure, trolling gang of clueless Apple cheerleaders is not interested in any factual and informed discussion, which makes the latter pointless.

We mean Apple no harm.

People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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We mean Apple no harm.

People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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