Apple is reportedly working with China-based server vendor Inspur to help transfer its iCloud data services in-house, according to sources out of the China supply chain (via DigiTimes).
Currently Apple is thought to rely heavily on Amazon Web Services (AWS) to host many of its cloud server requirements, but the company’s data center plans suggest it is looking to scale back the money it spends on third-party cloud computing platforms as its data demands increase.
Inspur currently has a share of over 60 percent of China's internet server market, and has previously agreed partnerships with Microsoft, Intel, IBM, and other technology companies looking to expand their server capacity. Inspur already has facilities close to Apple's headquarters in California that include an R&D team as well as a production center.
Neither Apple nor Inspur have confirmed the rumor, but sources within the supply chain quoted by Taiwan-based website DigiTimes have proven reliable in the past.
Last month, Apple signed a deal with Google worth between $400 million and $600 million that will see the Google Cloud Platform providing some of the cloud infrastructure for iCloud and other cloud-based Apple services.
Apple has never confirmed the cloud services that power iCloud, but past rumors have pointed towards AWS and Microsoft Azure, suggesting Apple will continue using multiple services to meet its needs until its own data centers are all fully operational.
Apple is currently building new data centers in Ireland, Denmark, Reno, and Arizona, and is expanding its existing data center in Prineville, Oregon.