Here are your Apple rumors and AAPL news items for today:
Partners: Despite recent reports that Samsung would be all but shut out of orders for Apple’s (AAPL) new A8 processor, a report from Korea says the tech giant is gearing up for mass production of the chip in the second quarter, MacRumors notes. Samsung was previously rumored to have experienced production problems with the new chip, leaving it unable to meet Apple’s volume requirements. That prompted reports that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSM) would handle almost all of the production of the A8 processor using its 20-nanometer production process. The new report from ZDNet Korea quotes a Samsung officials who calls claims of Samsung’s previous problems making the new chip “exaggerated.” Samsung is said to be preparing to begin manufacturing A8 chips at its factory near Austin, Texas, after signing a deal to produce the processors for Apple. Over the last few years, Apple has moved some component production away from Samsung as the two companies have become rivals in the smartphone and tablet markets. Some Asian media sources say that TSM has already commenced production of A8 chips. Recent rumors suggest that the upcoming iPhone 6 will feature a quad-core A8 processor.
Details: In January, Russia’s Megafon agreed to return the iPhone to its lineup, Reuters notes. The three-year deal between Apple and Russia’s second-largest wireless carrier requires Megafon to purchase a minimum of 750,000 iPhones. Under the agreement’s terms, Megafon must also invest $28 million in promoting the iPhone over the next three years. The iPhone accounted for about 9% of smartphone unit sales in Russia last year, but comprised 20% of the $5 billion generated by smartphone sales in the country.
Divergent: Data from industry research firm Mixpanel indicates that Apple’s new iPhone 5s continues to sell well, while the iPhone 5c appears to have plateaued. According to the report, the iPhone 5s now accounts for 19.31% of all iPhones in use. At its current rate of growth, the number of active iPhone 5s units is expected to soon overtake the number of iPhone 4s units in use. The iPhone 5 retains the largest share of active iPhones at 32.65%, followed by the iPhone 4s at 23.94%. While the iPhone 5s continues to advance, the iPhone 5c, which was launched alongside it in September — replacing the discontinued iPhone 5 — has captured just 6.34% of the iPhone market and is growing at a much slower pace. Recent reports indicate that Apple is likely to drop the iPhone 5c from its lineup after it launches the iPhone 6 some time later this year.
For more about the company, check out our previous Apple Rumors stories.