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Vivo reportedly working on an in-house chipset

Vivo's in-house chips could be a reality soon
Vivo's in-house chips could be a reality soon (image via Vivo)
A trademark application filed in September 2019 reveals that Vivo is reportedly working on an in-house chipset. It reveals very little about the specifics of the chipset, or even if it is intended for smartphones. It does, however, give credence to an earlier rumor that said Oppo was working on an in-house chip.

With the notable exception of Huawei (and Honor), all Chinese OEMs rely on chipsets made by the likes of Qualcomm, MediaTek, and even Samsung, in some cases. Huawei is the world's largest telecommunication equipment manufacturer, so it has the resources necessary to develop in-house chips. Now, it appears that BBK International-owned Vivo wants to dabble in the custom SoC business as well.

A Weibo post by Digital Chat Station reveals that Vivo had just filed a trademark application for its yet-to-be-named chipset back in September 2019, indicating that there has been work at that front for quite some time. Furthermore, some evidence emerged a few weeks ago, suggesting that Oppo -another subsidiary of BBK International- was also working on its in-house chips. Whether or not these chips will end up in smartphones remains to be seen. 

Over the years, BBK International has gained quite a lot of influence via its labyrinth of brands and sub-brands. It is possibly the only other Chinese OEM that operates on a scale that allows it even to consider custom chip development. Oppo and Vivo, in particular, have been responsible for pushing the envelope of smartphone design, and an in-house SoC seems well within their reach.

While Vivo may have registered the trademark for its in-house SoC, it could be months, even years, before we get to see it action. The likelihood of Vivo developing its custom cores in-house is low, and the company will very likely license the tech from ARM. Nonetheless, it'll be good to see some new faces in a market dominated by Qualcomm, MediaTek, and Kirin.


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Anil Satyanarayana, 2020-05- 9 (Update: 2020-05- 9)