What would chip makers be without Apple? Probably very poor.
Apple is expected to spend $28 billion on chips this year, up 15 percent from the $24.3 billion spent in 2011, according to AppleInsider. The data comes from an IHS iSuppli.forecast which also states that Samsung will be the the world's second-biggest buyer at $14.9 billion this year, with a modest increase of 0.3 percent.
Other companies that make up iSupplie's Top 10 -- Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Panasonic, Cisco Systems and Fujitsu -- are expected to cut semiconductor spending. Of course, none of those companies are doing financially as well as Apple.
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"Behind the scenes the company is engaging in another kind of conquest: the dominance of the electronics supply chain," said Myson Robles-Bruce, senior analyst for semiconductor spending and design activity at IHS. "Such a dominant position provides critical benefits, allowing one to dictate semiconductor pricing, control product road maps and obtain guaranteed supply and delivery."
It's true that because Apple is such a huge buyer that it can dictate pricing and other demands. This position likely allows the company to keep costs down and its earnings up.