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Apple lures Samsung chip designer to join firm

The father of Brazos is now in Cupertino
Fri Oct 12 2012, 13:50
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SAMSUNG CHIP MASTER Jim Mergard has jumped ship to Apple, according to reports.

Mergard, who spent 16 years at AMD working on Brazos among many other chips down the years, left AMD for Samsung to take a prominent role in its chip design operations. According to the Wall Street Journal, Mergard has now decided to move to Apple.

Samsung has been beefing up its chip design talent in recent years and there are strong rumours that the firm is going to make a big push in the ARM server market in the coming quarters. However none of that was enough to keep Mergard, who apparently has made the move to Samsung's arch-rival Apple.

While Samsung's chip design operations are not led by any one person, Mergard's decision to move to Apple will hurt the Korean outfit. Since Apple acquired PA Semiconductor, it has put considerable resources behind its chip design teams and that has been paying dividends, with the cappuccino company's A-series chips not only going toe-to-toe in performance with processors from traditional chip vendors such as Samsung, Texas Instruments and Qualcomm but also using some older process nodes to save costs.

Given Samsung's relationship with Apple, it will be interesting to see when Mergard will be able to actually start working for Apple, since it's likely that he is bound by a non-compete agreement, much like AMD's Mark Papermaster was bound after his move from IBM to Apple. µ


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