The second-generation self-developed chip is about to be released, and Google really wants to become Apple

time:2023-04-02 00:26:00 author:Memory module
The second-generation self-developed chip is about to be released, and Google really wants to become Apple

Last week, Apple's press conference was officially held. Many fruit fans couldn't hold back their excitement and stayed up until the early morning to watch the press conference. Let's not say whether I am surprised or not, I have to stay up late every year until the early morning to watch the press conference, but I have suffered a lot of fruit fans. A few days ago, another major mobile phone manufacturer in the United States announced that the new phone will be released at 23:00 on October 6th. Although it is still a bit late, it can be said to be quite considerate compared with the Apple conference. It will not be too late to stay up late to watch it. . About Google, many people's first impression may be the Android operating system, not the Pixel. Google's mobile phone sales are indeed not very high, but Google attaches great importance to this business, and even does not hesitate to develop its own mobile phone SoC. Last year, Google released its first self-developed mobile phone chip Tensor, and next month, the Pixel 7 series will arrive with Google's new self-developed chip, the Tensor G2 chip. Source: Google, as the developer of the mobile phone system with the largest number of users in the world, is uneasy about making only the system, and even develops its own chips. However, the mobile phone chip market already has giants such as Qualcomm and MediaTek, as well as rookies such as Ziguang Zhanrui. Does Google really need to develop its own chips?

Google's strength needs to be demonstrated by chips?

Among the many mobile phone manufacturers, companies that have or have ever developed their own chips include Huawei (Kirin series), Xiaomi (Surge S series), Samsung (Exynos series), Apple (A series), etc. Among them, Xiaomi Pengpai S series chips have not been updated for several years, and only Pengpai C series and P series chips have been released in the future. Judging from the actions of mobile phone manufacturers, self-developed chips are indeed very beneficial, but Google is not an ordinary mobile phone manufacturer. Self-developed chips have both advantages and disadvantages. Let’s talk about the benefits first. The main reason why mobile phone manufacturers develop their own chips is that they can demonstrate the technical strength of manufacturers. The only two manufacturers that could threaten Apple's position are Huawei and Samsung, both of which have their own processors. Source: Except for Samsung, Huawei's mobile phone manufacturers are very dependent on the supply chain. Even Apple has only two major killers: self-developed chips and iOS. Now that Google holds Tensor and Android, its trump card is very close to Apple, which may further enhance Google's position in the industry. This is one of the benefits of Google's self-developed chips. Second, after the success of self-developed chips, some costs can be reduced. If the sales of mobile phones are low, the cost of self-developed chips will definitely be higher than that of purchasing, but the situation of Google’s mobile phones is very good, and the sales in the first quarter of this year broke into the top three in North America and the United Kingdom. After the cost of self-developed chips is shared, the higher the sales volume, the lower the average cost, which is more cost-effective than purchasing Qualcomm and MediaTek chips. After the two benefits are finished, let’s talk about the harm. Google is not an ordinary mobile phone manufacturer, but also the developer of the system with the largest number of users in the world. When discussing Google mobile phones with Lei Technology's small partners, he believed that Google mobile phones can only be used as test machines for the new version of Android. After all, Pixel is a real son. It will definitely give priority to the adaptation system, and Google mobile phones will not sell well. Photo source: GSMArena However, it turns out that Google's mobile phone sales are getting higher and higher, and it has surpassed many third- and fourth-tier mobile phone manufacturers. The screen supply chain consulting firm DSCC also revealed that Google is developing a folding screen phone. There is no doubt that Google doesn't think the Pixel should stay in the test machine forever, and Google has ambitions to enter the mobile phone market. It is very uncomfortable for Android manufacturers. Google has always been the main force in the research and development of the new system, and many new features are also developed by Google. In the past, Google and Android mobile phone manufacturers were not competitors, or the competition was not obvious and fierce, but the development momentum of Google mobile phones was too strong, and it may not be impossible to threaten other Android mobile phone manufacturers in the future. Once Google restricts the use of Android by other manufacturers, not to mention that it will not be used at all, and some features will not be provided, it will be a serious blow to other Android mobile phone manufacturers. Maybe Google won't do that, but Android phone makers have to guard against it. Microsoft has also promised that after the acquisition of Activision Blizzard, PlayStation can still play COD, but can Sony not panic? Microsoft can use solutions such as exclusive periods to attack Sony.

Tensor G2, will it let us down?

No matter what Google thinks, self-developed chips are a certainty, and the second generation of products is coming. Other mobile phone manufacturers may be a little flustered, or do not pay attention to Google's mobile phone business, but in the eyes of mobile phone digital enthusiasts, they have been looking forward to the performance of Google chips. Last year, the first-generation Pixel 6 series of mobile phones powered by Google chips was released, but the performance was not satisfactory. The GeekBench5 running score data shows that the single-core performance of Google Tensor is about the same as that of the Snapdragon 888, and the multi-core performance is the same as that of the Snapdragon 865. This is related to the design of Google Tensor. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 released at the end of last year adopts a design of 1 super core + 3 large cores + 4 small cores, and the super core is Cortex-X2, the big core is Cortex-A710, and the small core is Cortex-A710. It's a Cortex-A510. Source: LetsGoDigital Google Tensor is different. It adopts 2 super core + 2 large core + 4 small core design, and the super core is Cortex-X1, and the large core and small core are also backward Cortex-A76, Cortex-A55, single core It can catch up with the Snapdragon 888, which also uses the X1 super core, but multi-core is not enough. The power consumption of the two super cores is too high, and the large and small cores are relatively old. So the question is, what will Tensor G2 look like? Let me remind you, don't have too much hope, because Tensor G2 is still a 2+2+4 design, and the super core and small core have not changed, but the large core has been changed to Cortex-A78. The A78 large core is good, but the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 to be released at the end of this year has been confirmed and will use the Cortex-A720 large core. The core architecture of Google's self-developed processor has been lagging behind, and its performance will definitely not catch up. Compared with the previous generation, the Tensor G2 will definitely be better, but compared with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 and the next-generation Dimensity processor, the Tensor G2 will definitely be a lot worse. For Google, this is not entirely a bad thing, the processor performance is not good, maybe other mobile phone manufacturers will no longer consider Google mobile phones to be a threat.

Self-developed processors, the general trend of the mobile phone industry?

The Tensor performance is not good, and the Tensor G2 will probably not perform very well, but Google still insists because the self-developed chip is too important. A few years ago, Xiaomi launched the Pengpai S1. Later, although the mobile phone SoC was not updated for a long time due to multiple tapeouts, it still insisted on self-developed chips, but with weaker functions, mainly used for charging management, photography and other aspects. OPPO, vivo and other manufacturers are also committed to chip development, and have launched NPU and ISP chips for taking pictures. For mobile phone manufacturers with insufficient technical and experience reserves, self-developed chips are very difficult and expensive, but manufacturers are still flocking here, because self-developed chips are proof of strength. Source: Xiaomi's "volume" has become very popular in recent years, not only in the workplace, but also in the market, and the domestic mobile phone industry is extremely involved. In the mid-to-low-end market, Android manufacturers are hot, but the cost-effectiveness has brought sales, and the profit of the product has been extremely low. Therefore, manufacturers all hope to rush into the high-end market. The domestic high-end market used to be evenly divided between Huawei and Apple. However, after Huawei's mobile phone business was restricted, other Android manufacturers failed to eat the market vacated by Huawei, and Apple's mobile phone market share skyrocketed. In order to fight against Apple and improve its own brand value, Android manufacturers will invest so much in self-developed chips. Strength is the key to enhancing brand value, so Huawei was able to compete with Apple in the flagship market. In the past, Android manufacturers often boasted about UI and software, but plagiarism of software functions is too convenient, and it is impossible to monopolize them by themselves. Self-developed chips are definitely a better choice, and it is also the general trend of the mobile phone industry. Photo source: Lei Technology Filming Now that Android manufacturers are still developing their own camera chips, whoever can take the lead in developing a mobile SoC that can be stably updated can take the lead and advantage in this competition. It’s just that these manufacturers also need to consider Qualcomm. Before the self-developed chips are mature, they can only use Qualcomm processors. However, if their self-developed chips perform close to Qualcomm Snapdragon, they are likely to abandon Qualcomm chips in the future, then Qualcomm may Terminate the cooperation with them as soon as possible, so that they have no high-end chips available in the short term. Huawei faced this situation at the beginning, especially in the K3V2 era, Huawei's self-developed processors performed poorly. But Huawei persevered, and it was not able to compete with Qualcomm until after the Kirin 970. Fortunately, with the rise of MediaTek, Qualcomm has a strong opponent. Even if it is restricted by Qualcomm due to its self-developed chips, it can ensure that products have high-end processors through MediaTek chips. Google has strong capital, so it does not worry about the loss of self-developed processors. Other mobile phone manufacturers have less financial resources than Google, and the progress of self-developed processors will not be too fast. As for Google Tensor, it is obvious that it has the strength to choose an advanced core, but it is abandoned, probably in order not to directly compete with Android manufacturers. This is good, other mobile phone manufacturers can at least rest assured. Cover image source: LetsGoDigital

(Responsible editor:Notebook computer)

Related content