Deals

Apple in talks to buy Japanese chipmaker’s smartphone display unit, report says

Image Credit: John Koetsier

Apple is reportedly in talks to buy a smartphone-display-design division of Japanese chipmaker Renesas. The move would give the company more expertise in better display technology for smartphones.

Apple is reportedly looking into acquiring the Renesas stake in Renesas SP Drivers, a joint venture with Sharp and Taiwan’s Powerchip. The Nikkei Asian Review reported that Apple would take over Renesas’ entire 55 percent stake for as much as $479 million.

The deal would reportedly help Apple “improve image sharpness and battery life,” according to the report. Apple already tries to lead the market with its signature “retina display” technology for smartphones and tablets. Display driver and controller chips are key to better display quality, performance, and power efficiency.

Sharp has 25 percent of the joint venture, and Powerchip has 20 percent. Apple may try to buy Sharp’s ownership out as well, if it succeeds in buying the Renesas stake, the report said.

Apple has not responded to a request for comment.

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Apple designs and markets consumer electronics, computer software, and personal computers. The company's best-known hardware products include the Macintosh line of computers, the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad. Apple software includes t... read more »

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