Satellite images: Samsung's Apple factory in Austin?
Samsung Electronics is making Apple chips in Texas.
That's according to a Reuters report noting that, perhaps a bit surprisingly, the Korean electronics giant -- also a major smartphone rival of Apple -- is producing the sophisticated A5 processing chip that lies at the heart of Apple's iPhone 4S and iPad 2 devices.
The factory complex in Austin, called Samsung Austin Semiconductor, is pictured above and in the Google map below. It's the largest foreign investment in Texas, according to Reuters. Construction of the complex, which lies along Samsung Boulevard in Austin, started in 1996, and the first semiconducter fabrication facility began operating in 1998. It builds high-precision microchips -- chips such as Apple's A5.
The company opened a second wafer factory in Austin in 2008 to build NAND flash chips, the fast memory storage elements that work in computers and mobile devices.
Reuters notes that the Austin facility is located there in part because it's close to the University of Texas' engineering school. The two factories employ about 3,500 total workers, according to Reuters.
-- David Sarno
Image: A satellite photo shows a Samsung factory in Austin, Texas. Credit: Google Maps