MediaTek reiterates plans to develop high-performance Kompanio SoCs for Windows on Arm laptops
Just a few years ago, MediaTek surprised everyone as it managed to dethrone industry giants like Qualcomm and Samsung, becoming the world’s largest mobile SoC supplier. Since then, the company has been churning new products at breakneck speeds in order to prove that its recent achievements were not just a fluke coinciding with the pandemic. MediaTek’s latest flagship Dimensity 9200 SoC continues to challenge Qualcomm’s offerings, including the freshly released Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 model, but the Taiwanese chip maker also plans to try its hand at Windows on Arm laptops, seeing that the Kompanio lineup designed for inexpensive Chromebooks and tablets is profitable enough.
PCWorld reports that MediaTek restated its intentions to enter the Windows on Arm market at a recent executive summit where company executives talked about a US$40 billion opportunity. Apart from more powerful Kompanio SoCs that should provide a viable alternative to Qualcopmm’s Snapdragon 8cx Gen 3, MediaTek is considering making other laptop components including 5G modems, Wi-Fi + Bluetooth cards and displays ICs.
Furthermore, MediaTek Vice President Vince Hu delineated the steps taken to enter the PC market, stating that the company is to transition from “the low-power space to the high-power space” and that “bigger investments as a foundational capability” need to be made in CPU and GPU technology. PCWorld is suggesting that these plans could mean that MediaTek is looking to design the processing and graphics cores in house, similar to how Apple is developing its M processors based on ARM’s IPs.
To ensure that its Windows on Arm plans have legs, MediaTek recruited Adam King as the company’s general manager of client computing. King previously worked at Intel, developing the client platform business for six years and overseeing the sales of notebook processors starting with gen 4 through gen 6 for four years. No teasers as to what we could expect from the upcoming Kompanio SoCs, but King estimated that “the market will over the long term transition to Arm based processors[...] because of the power and area efficiency,” yet this “requires lots of work and lots of barriers to be overcome.”