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Apple Buys Israeli Flash Manufacturer 114

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the gotta-buy-em-all dept.
Lucas123 writes "According to published reports Apple is plunking down up to $500 million to purchase solid-state drive start-up Anobit Technologies. Even Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tweeted about the deal congratulating Apple on its first acquisition in his country. Apple is planning to use the acquisition to set up to set up a semiconductor development center in Israel. Apple already uses NAND flash from Anobit in its iPhone, iPad and MacBook Air products, according to the reports."
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Apple Buys Israeli Flash Manufacturer

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  • Huh? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Wednesday December 21, 2011 @12:23PM (#38449696)

    China doesn't tend to make things like chips. Those are almost all made somewhere else. China is more of a "final assembly" kind of space. You send them over the parts, they build the final product for cheap.

  • by Old97 (1341297) on Wednesday December 21, 2011 @12:25PM (#38449730)
    They design, they don't fab. Just like PA Semi which Apple bought earlier. Apple designs products and product components but then outsources their manufacture. They aren't interested (so far) in owning fabrication plants. They can be more agile if they can switch manufacturers as their requirements change.
  • by WorldPiece (2462300) on Wednesday December 21, 2011 @03:39PM (#38451994)
    Dear Mr. Coward, Where do you get this information? As an Israeli, who has served in the army, who votes in democratic elections and is able to criticize his government freely, who shares his cubicle at work with an Israeli Arab, who also enjoys civil rights and liberties and votes for his representatives, and as a Jew who carries the stain of history on his family's story, please tell me where is this ethnic cleansing you speak of? There is nothing I would rather wish for than the end of the occupation of the west bank, especially as a reserve soldier, but if it was so simple it would have been over a long time ago. There is no such thing as an evil nation, that's just racist. We are people. When I get called for duty, I spend most my time riding in a jeep in which the commander is a lawyer, the driver is a youth council, the medic is a magician, and I'm an electronic engineer. This isn't an ego bunch, and know for a fact that there isn't an army in the world that shows as much restraint as we do. And back to the topic, from a tech company perspective, its smart to set up a development center in Israel. It worked for Intel, IBM, TI, Google, Microsoft, HP and the list goes on.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 21, 2011 @08:28PM (#38455156)

    Poor bad block management causing slowdowns over time even if you have trim enabled. Also stuttering during write operations. It was a huge problem on the first generation Airs.

    The first generation Airs used hard drives, not SSDs. There was an SSD option, but it cost $1000 to go from an 80GB HDD to a 64GB SSD.

    Apple never used the SSD controllers which had stutter problems etc. They've always done a lot more storage qualification than your average bear, so they waited out the bad early problems and worked with vendors to get controller/firmware combos qualified before hopping in the pool.

    This acquisition is not about Macs. Apple doesn't need to make its own standalone high-performance SSD controller. Other companies are doing that job just fine for them. Apple has no value to add, and Apple doesn't want to become a chip supplier to other companies (their internal volumes aren't enough to justify developing their own chip just to ship in Macs).

    What it is about is the iPad and iPhone. These are highly integrated designs where most functions, including the flash storage controller, are integrated into one SoC, which Apple designs. That SoC contains a mix of Apple-owned and third party intellectual property cores, but Apple has been moving to bring more and more of that IP in house so that they get unique advantages. A more sophisticated flash storage controller core which lets them take advantage of lower grade flash media without compromising reliability is a good example.

    (where by lower grade I don't mean that they plan to ship crap, more that as flash memory gains capacity its reliability at remembering what you wrote to it is falling off a cliff, especially with 3 bits per cell MLC NAND, so where cellphones could get away with less sophisticated flash controllers before, they won't be able to in the future.)

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