Rumor: Apple poaching Samsung’s semiconductor and battery experts

Apple A9 (mockup 002)

Apple is luring Samsung Electronics’ engineers, including chip experts who specialize ”in next-generation technology” related to signal and visual-processing management and battery technology, offering raises and competitive benefits, according to a report Monday by The Korea Times.

In addition to highly-competitive benefits and large annual paychecks, Apple is said to be luring Samsung experts by promising them greater independence, according to unnamed officials.

Though the report does not divulge the exact number of Samsung engineers that have jumped ship, another executive said these people have no significant language barriers “so their adaptation to the new company proves less challenging.”

Some of the experts have reportedly been poached from Samsung’s SDI division, which not only researches and manufactures lithium-ion batteries for mobile devices but also automotive battery technology. Apple was previously mentioned as hiring away engineers from Tesla.

Samsung SDI supplies its products to BMW and others leading car vendors and Apple, as you know, is rumored to have been researching its own electric car technology.

“Apple has fewer patents in electric vehicles as it was late coming into the market for the development of those cars,” the story notes.

Apple has also hired battery experts from A123 Systems, to which the company responded by filing a lawsuit alleging Apple unfairly poached its employees.

Samsung, along with TSMC, is also a major contract manufacturer for Apple-designed processors that power iPhones and iPads and one of the few supplier of screens and DRAM chips for Apple products.

The South Korean firm is said to have landed a contract to build the 14-nanometer ‘A9’ processors for 2015 iPhone and iPad refreshes.

Despite their ongoing patent disputes in the United States, the story claims that the two firms “are on a full track to normalize their business partnership.”

Unnamed Samsung officials reportedly told the paper that Samsung will strengthen its strategic partnership with Apple “in futuristic business projects, as they need each other.”

Source: The Korea Times via G for Games