Sony may be exploring the possibility of producing its own smartphone processor, according to new rumors. The report comes from DigiTimes, an industry publication that can sometimes be right on the money, or the source of confused or inaccurate rumors, so it’s worth treating it as gossip for now. However, Sony’s isn’t the first name linked with a similar shift away from the Qualcomm chips that usually power its phones, giving the rumor some weight.
Quoting industry sources, the report states that Sony is developing its own processor for use inside smartphones, and it has signed on Taiwanese company Global Unichip to come up with a design. It’s mentioned Samsung, Huawei, and Apple’s use of an in-house chip for its hardware has helped “ramp up earnings and market share,” which has attracted Sony to investigate the same strategy.
Sony has traditionally used Qualcomm processors for the majority of its smartphones, but has also chosen MediaTek chips for some of its mid-range devices, meaning should this rumor be accurate, it’ll be a considerable change for the company. However, while it may be looking at the competition, Sony knows how lucrative creating, using, and reselling its own components can be. It controls a large percentage of the smartphone camera sensor market, and has an established reputation in it, which other companies play off by adding a Sony sensor to their own devices.
In the same report, Digtimes also says LG is interested in making its own chips, again linking it with Global Unichip. LG has explored this route before, and in 2014, launched the Nuclun octa-core mobile processor, which was stuffed inside the G3 Screen. Poor performance hampered the chip, and rumors soon spread that a Nuclun 2 processor was in development, with talk that a delay has shifted its release date to 2016. Could Global Unichip be reworking LG’s chip?
For now, none of this is official, but we’ll keep you updated. Recent rumors have also stated Google is interested in producing its own mobile processor.