OPPO may be closer than ever to having its own Kirin-esque series of chips
The Nikkei Asian Review has reported that OPPO is definitely on its way to a proprietary chipset development team of its own. This may put the increasingly familar smartphone and mobile peripherals OEM in more direct competition with Huawei, which of course also makes its own chipsets that are mostly found in its more premium smartphones.
So far, OPPO has reportedly made some potentially significant hires in this vein, including individuals with a history of senior positions at MediaTek or of working as engineers at UNISOC. As these companies are the second-largest chip-manufacturers in the world and in China respectively, the OEM could arguably do far worse.
The Review was not hugely specific as to who these future OPPO staff members are, although it did mention that Jeffery Ju, formerly of MediaTek as a co-chief operating officer and of Xiaomi as an executive, is now among this number. Furthermore, the OEM is also reportly looking to poach yet more execs from other companies that include Qualcomm and HiSilicon itself.
The timing of this emerging news is probably no accident: OPPO may believe that now is the time to leverage Huawei's increasing chip-supply woes due to its US administration-mandated blacklisting to expedite its own ambitions. To that end, it has also fostered this vision by, for example, securing trademarks for such products to date.
Nevertheless, the exact nature and applications of these oneday OPPO SoCs remain unclear. The OEM also faces an epic challenge in establishing such business: after all, Xiaomi, another increasingly strong name in its native China and abroad, saw its own journey down the same path peter out in an eventual compromise of merely planning in-house wireless SoCs.
However, should OPPO succeed where this OEM (partially) failed, the rewards may just outweigh the benefits, as it did for Huawei prior to the trade-war. In addition, thanks to its position within the umbrella of BBK Electronics, it may also be in a position to supply its sister brands, which include Realme and OnePlus.