According to recent reports, Samsung and Oppo are preparing to switch to bespoke silicon processors to compete with Apple’s A-series chips in the iPhone. Oppo, a Chinese smartphone manufacturer, debuted its first bespoke silicon chip, the MariSilicon X image processor, in the Find X5 earlier this year. According to IT Home, the company’s chip design team is now working on an application processor (AP) and a proprietary System on Chip (SoC) for future Oppo devices. Oppo, like Apple, is relying on TSMC to produce its silicon chips.
According to IT Home, Oppo plans to release its proprietary AP in 2023, using TSMC’s 6nm manufacturing. In 2024, a full SoC, incorporating the AP and modem, will be built using TSMC’s 4nm technology, according to reports. In terms of efficiency and fabrication methods, the chips may not be competitive with Qualcomm and Mediatek’s offerings, but they might be used in low-cost mobile devices first, with a gradual increase in market penetration.
Samsung to build an Application Processor unique to Galaxy devices
In the meantime, according to iNews 24, Samsung smartphone head Roh Tae-moon stated at a business town hall gathering that “we will build an AP unique to the Galaxy.” The Exynos 2200 chip in Samsung’s current Galaxy S22 series of smartphones is causing GPS difficulties and poor thermal performance, prompting the move toward custom silicon chips. Samsung wants to be able to follow Apple’s lead in taking numerous factors into account when designing bespoke semiconductors rather than focusing solely on performance.
With Oppo laying out plans to aggressively compete in the high-end smartphone market and Xiaomi pledging a “war of life and death” against Apple, the movement appears to be part of a trend of increasing ambition from Android smartphone brands to directly compete with Apple and become the world’s largest smartphone brand.