Apple has Inked a New Agreement with Softbank's Arm on Chip Technology Development That Stretches Beyond 2040

Apple has Inked a New Agreement with Softbank's Arm on Chip Technology Development That Stretches Beyond 2040

By Staff Writer, 07 September 2023

Apple and Arm have reached an agreement that extends until at least 2040, as mentioned in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday.

This development signifies that Apple has ensured continued access to the essential intellectual property of Arm's architecture, which is integral to its iPhone and Mac processors, for the foreseeable future.

Arm, a subsidiary of SoftBank, is gearing up to make its debut on the Nasdaq stock exchange in the upcoming weeks, with a potential valuation of up to $52 billion. This would mark the most substantial technology initial public offering of the year.

Related: Let's Talk About the New Round of Tech IPOs and How They Need to Deliver

The tech company's recent announcement of a long-term agreement with Apple extending beyond 2040 has quelled concerns about the potential fallout from Arm's corporate restructuring. This development ensures that one of Arm's crucial partners will continue to rely on their technology, maintaining the longstanding collaborative relationship and securing Apple's access to Arm's architecture.

Given Arm's integral role in smartphone chip design, including Apple's A-series chips, this commitment underscores the difficulty and cost associated with transitioning to alternative instruction sets, offering stability and continuity in the tech industry.

Arm, originally established in 1990, experienced significant growth following the release of the iPhone in 2007. Smartphone manufacturers sought chips with a focus on low-power consumption, in contrast to the x86 architecture employed in PC and server chips by companies like Intel and AMD.

Apple, Google, Nvidia, Samsung, AMD, Intel, Cadence, Synopsis, Samsung, and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company have expressed keen interest in acquiring Arm shares as part of the offering. The total investment could reach up to $735 million, as indicated in the filing.

This investment would grant these companies a share of ownership in Arm and a voice in its management, commonly referred to as "cornerstone investors."

Source: Kif Leswing for CNBC

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