Digitimes‘ poor track record has been thrust into the spotlight in recent days, but that hasn’t stopped one of the Taiwanese news site’s reports from having a major effect on stock prices for Samsung and Hynix. The report from earlier this week claims that Apple has placed “huge” orders for DRAM chips with Elpida, soaking up half of the capacity at the firm’s main plant in Hiroshima, Japan.
1 GB of Elpida DRAM in third-generation iPad (Source: iFixit)
As noted by Reuters, the rumor has had a significant effect on fellow DRAM manufacturers Samsung and Hynix, with Samsung losing $10 billion in market value today in a 6% stock decline. The smaller Hynix was down nearly 9%
“It looks like Apple doesn’t want to see Samsung and hynix dominate the chip market. Apple wants to maintain its bargaining power by keeping Elpida running,” said Choi Do-yeon, an analyst at LIG Investment & Securities.
Elpida filed for bankruptcy in late February, and Micron has emerged as a likely acquirer for the company. The combined Micron-Elpida would be a strong competitor in the DRAM market, sparking concerns for others in the competitive industry.
DRAM, the volatile memory used to hold active applications and other data for use while a device is in operation, is a commodity in the consumer electronics market, with Apple routinely sourcing from multiple suppliers and shifting orders to achieve the best pricing.