Apple is moving in on Imagination Technologies turf with new UK office in St Albans

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Apple and Imagination are in the middle of a row over chips (Source: Getty)

Apple is moving in on British chipmaker Imagination Technologies turf in more ways than one - and the latest is quite literal.

The tech giant is setting up a new office in St Albans to work on creating its own graphics chips, it's been revealed. That's just eight miles down the road from the headquarters of troubled Imagination in Kings Langley. 

Read more: Imagination Technologies shares drop as Apple bites back

The two firms are in the midst of a bitter dispute after Apple told Imagination it would no longer use its graphics chip technology in iPhones and iPads, and instead will make its own.... right on its doorstep, it turns out.

The latest twist in the saga comes just days after Apple hit back at the already cowed Imagination, saying it had alerted the UK firm in 2015 it would no longer use its intellectual property. Imagination alerted investors that Apple planned to ditch it in April of this year, putting itself up for sale last month as a result.

It derives around half of its revenue from the royalties it gets from Apple using its IP and has argued the Silicon Valley giant will not be able to produce its own chips without infringing its IP. 

Read more: Apple hints at future plans with shock drop of Imagination Technologies

Apple has rented out a 22,5000 sq ft office in the centre of St Albans, the Telegraph reports, and is hiring for more than a dozen jobs based in Hertfordshire in the areas of graphics and engineering "as we build our UK Design Centre", it said in job ads.

Apple is set to open a huge new headquarters in Battersea Power Station in 2021, seen as a seal of approval after Brexit.