After months of suing each other into the ground, the Apple vs. Samsung nerd fight has finally come to a head. Reuters is reporting that Taiwanese company TSMC is beginning its trial run of the next generation of Apple processors.
Samsung had been the sole provider for the A5 chip that powers the iPad 2, and Reuters rightly suggests that it would be unlikely that Apple would use a new manufacturer to churn out the same chip. That means that a move away from Samsung would probably also mean a complete redesign of the A6—if it's still even called that. Because the current design belongs to Apple, not Samsung, whoever ends up manufacturing the new chip would be in the clear to change whatever needs changing.
Of course, it won't be a complete divorce; Apple needs flash memory like a baby needs milk. Apple is by far the top consumer of NAND memory (they bought $17.5 billion worth of it last year) and Samsung's the world's largest supplier (35.6 percent). So don't think of it as a break-up, so much as just needing some time apart. [Reuters]