Dialog Semi slump, banks weigh on European shares; volatility up

Reuters

AAPL chip maker Dialog Semiconductor Plc DLG.F plummeted as much as 30% Tuesday after an analyst downgraded the stock, noting that Dialog could potentially lose its Apple contracts as early as 2019.

Do you feel that Apple's custom PMIC and GPU will be found in iPhones and iPad devices starting from 2019?

It would mean Apple calling time on its existing arrangement with Dialog Semiconductor, which makes chips for existing iPhones. Apple is trying to reduce its external dependencies, minimising its reliance on suppliers by bringing the design of key components home to its research facilities.

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Apple's suppliers are in the spotlight after Imagination Technologies (IMG.L) last week revealed Apple's plans to replace its graphics chips with parts it is developing in-house, sending shudders through Apple's global supply chain. Reading, England-based Dialog gets about 74 percent of its sales from Apple. It turns out that Apple is looking to improve iPhone battery life by designing its own battery chips. Apple has not yet commented on the claims either, so the news remains unconfirmed at this point. Apple made up 70% of Dialog's 2016 sales, the report says.

Imagination shares have since rebounded, but they remain 60% below where they started the year. It makes sense for Apple to invest more in that area and replace the current parts with custom integrated designs.

Tech stocks were the biggest sectoral losers, down 0.8 per cent after Dialog Semiconductor dropped 18.4 per cent. When ARM was acquired previous year by Japanese company SoftBank, industry observers started to wonder whether the move might affect the independence upon which it had built its success. Due to the close nature of Dialog's relationship with Apple, it isn't unusual to see a steady flow of employees to and from the two companies, the person said. Apple is said to be developing the new chip in its research facilities in California and Munich. The company risks regressions in performance during the first few iterations of its product while its team acquires experience. Previous year the company had a $10 million investment in wireless charging technology.

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