Apple recently confirmed their acquisition of Israeli semiconductor startup Anobit Technologies. While the price was not confirmed, it is believed to be between $400 million and $500 million.
This purchase can mean quite a lot for Apple. As we may remember from Apple’s little laser story, the company is not afraid to invest heavily in resources that will help them up production significantly, which in turn means more money. So how does this help Apple?
Many of Apple’s devices. In fact, we can argue that their main devices: iPhone and iPad (plus the MacBook Air and the iPod touch) all make use of flash memory. It’s fast, and isn’t prone to some of the problems of traditional spinning hard drives (spinning hard drives are susceptible to drops, sudden movements, etc). It’s also very light, compact and consumes less power. This means it is perfectly suited for their smaller devices. Anobit manufactures flash memory controllers, and the component they make improves the performance of NAND flash memory chips. These are found in iOS devices.
What Does Anobit Actually Do?
Anobit designs and manufactures a component that is designed to improve flash memory. They provide lash storage based on their proprietary MSP (Memory Signal Processing) technology. This improves “the speed, endurance and performance of flash storage systems while driving down the cost,” writes TechCrunch. They add, “Anobit’s technology is comprised of signal processing algorithms that compensate for the physical limitations of NAND flash.”
With this acquisition, comes Anobit’s workforce, which is said to consist of around 200 employees. Of those employees, around 160 are said to be chip engineers. This is in addition to Apple’s current team of chip engineers, which is said to be around 1,000.
Last But Not Least
Apple is always striving to improve components and manufacturing while driving down costs. That’s how they sell the base-model iPad for $500, which some may say is expensive, but is quite a fair price when compared to competitors’ tablets. If they can do something that allows them to make more devices, and make them faster, Apple will go for it. As end users, we can probably hope for faster, more efficient devices.