Apple Inc. (AAPL) Versus Samsung: Who Wins in a Divorce?

United Microelectronics Corp (ADR) (NYSE:UMC)

United Microelectronics Corp (ADR) (NYSE:UMC) is the second largest foundry in the world. Like Taiwan Semiconductor, the company does not design chips, so it would be a good fit for Apple. The company is about a third the size of Taiwan Semiconductor Mfg. Co. Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:TSM), which means that scale could be an issue.

However, it could also be a way for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) to team up with a hungry competitor looking to take on the industry giant. On that score, it would be a win-win, since United Microelectronics Corp (ADR) (NYSE:UMC) would probably be willing to do just about anything to appease Apple. This could make the company a notable dark horse candidate for a deal.

Not an easy change

At the end of the day, Apple and Samsung haven’t broken up because of convenience. Shifting suppliers isn’t an easy task. However, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) would be foolish to not be looking for a new partner. In fact, its efforts to move beyond Foxconn could be the model it follows with chips.

There, it added Pegatron as a manufacturer for the iPad Mini to complement its relationship with Foxconn. So there could be plenty of transition time between a full switch, for the company and investors. Any deal with Intel, however, would probably lead to an immediate share price increase at the chip maker, wiping out the opportunity the shares present today.

Reuben Brewer has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Apple and Intel. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple and Intel.