Apple will reportedly use RAM chips made by Yangtze Memory Technologies Co. in the iPhone 14 series. This set off a firestorm of complaints from U.S. politicians, including suggestions the chips will somehow be used to surveil Americans.
YMTC is partially owned by the Chinese government and has ties to the Chinese military. There have been calls for it to be added to the U.S. Entity List of companies that face import restrictions.
Apple expands iPhone 14 RAM suppliers to controversial YMTC
Apple currently sources iPhone DRAM and NAND flash memory from Korean companies, primarily Samsung. But Apple has agreed to use YMTC-made RAM in the just-announced iPhone 14, according to BusinessKorea.
Several Republicans lawmakers were quick to protest the move.
“Apple is playing with fire,” Marco Rubio (R.-FL) told the Financial Times. “It knows the security risks posed by YMTC. If it moves forward, it will be subject to scrutiny like it has never seen from the federal government. We cannot allow Chinese companies beholden to the Communist party into our telecommunications networks and millions of Americans’ iPhones.”
Outrageous that Apple may use YMTC chips in the iPhone. YMTC is China’s state-owned champion for memory chips & part of the CCP's plan to control strategic dual-use supply chains. Last July, @RepMcCaul & I urged @SecRaimondo to add YMTC to the Entity List. https://t.co/eLFlGmW25o
— Senator Bill Hagerty (@SenatorHagerty) April 1, 2022
The RAM chips won’t show up in iPhone 14 units sold in America, whether Apple starts using memory made by YMTC or not. Without confirming that it has reached an agreement with the Chinese chip-maker, Apple told the Financial Times that it plans to only use the YMTC chips in iPhones sold in China.