According to a report from Japan, next Tuesday Qualcomm will make an announcement and it is assumed that the chip designer will present the Snapdragon 865 mobile platform. It is expected to be within the high-end Android devices next year, the new Samsung chipset will be produced using its EUV process at 7 nm. The lower the process number, the more transistors fit inside the chip, which makes it more powerful and energy-efficient. And extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUV) is a more accurate method of marking a cut chip for transistor placement. The current high-quality chipset of Qualcomm is the Snapdragon 855+, an overclocked version of the Snapdragon 855 mobile platform that offers a 15% improvement in graphics capabilities.
However, there may be another reason for the announcement. As a result, some new Android phones should be unveiled on Tuesday, including a pair of Xiaomi (Xiaomi Mi 9 Pro 5G and Xiaomi Mi MIX Alpha), the Sony Xperia 5 and Realme X2. With this in mind, the buzz around the water cooler suggests that one or more of these devices could be the reason for the progress published by Qualcomm yesterday for the next event. All the phones above will use a Snapdragon SoC with the 855+ provided within the Mi 9 Pro 5G and possibly the Mi MIX Alpha. The normal Snapdragon 855 SoC will power the Xperia 5 with the Snapdragon 730G chip that drives the X2. There must be a connection between the number “3” used in Xiaomi’s progress and the three smartphone manufacturers we discussed in this section.
While Samsung is doing a great job and building the Snapdragon 865, Qualcomm will return to the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) for the Snapdragon 821 2021 mobile platform. TSMC, the largest independent foundry in the world, takes the chips from the assembly line for companies Design their own chips, but they don’t have the facilities to make them. For example, both Apple and Huawei design their own SoCs as A13 Bionic and Kirin 990 respectively. But both rely on TSMC to produce the chips they designed.
This was a rather tumultuous year for Qualcomm with several high and low points
As for the Snapdragon 865, traditionally, the new Samsung Galaxy S phones were the first with a global launch to showcase the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset and that probably won’t change next year. The first phone that worked with the Snapdragon 855 mobile platform was the Xiaomi Mi 9, but this device was not offered worldwide.
2019 was a rather tumultuous year for Qualcomm. He started with the chip designer in the middle of a fight with Apple and both companies were preparing to face each other in court several times. Qualcomm was also the defendant in an antitrust case presented by the FTC. The jury trial in January was chaired by Judge Lucy Koh (renowned Samsung against Apple) During the trial, Apple and other companies testified against Qualcomm’s sales practices, including its “No license, no chips” policy, the calculation of the charges based on a phone’s retail price and the no licenses for its essential patents in a fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory manner (FRAND).
Things improved in April (as far as Qualcomm is concerned) just when a judicial battle with Apple was ending; The two sets have agreed an agreement. All legal actions between the companies were abandoned and Apple paid Qualcomm an undeclared amount estimated at $ 4.5 billion; In return, Apple received a six-year license (with a two-year option) and a multi-year chip supply contract.
And then Qualcomm sailed, but only for a month. The verdict was issued in May and Judge Koh determined that Qualcomm had behaved anti-competitive. The loss of this court case could force the chip designer to review their current business practices. And although Judge Koh refused to grant Qualcomm a suspension that would allow him to continue with the status quo until all his appeals had been exhausted, the Court of Appeal of the Ninth Circuit for the US last month granted the suspension.
If Qualcomm fails to revoke Judge Koh’s ruling on appeal, he faces the long, complex and difficult task of renegotiating all current contracts he has with phone manufacturers. The chip designer requested the suspension because he didn’t want to go through this process, win the appeal and then accept a new set of contracts.
- Judge’s Decision is Awful for Qualcomm, Useful for Phone Manufacturers
- Qualcomm will get at Least $4.5 billion from Apple as Part of its Patent Settlement
- Qualcomm tries to postpone a court decision that could change the way it sells chips
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