MediaTek's Helio X30 high-end chipset will be built on TSMC's 10nm process
A Chinese report claims that chip maker MediaTek will partner up with silicon fab TSMC to build two mobile chipsets on the latter's 10nm process. Said chipsets are the Helio X30 (MediaTek's high-end offering), and the Helio X35 (the more economical one).
Reportedly, the 10nm X30 and X35 series chipsets will enter volume production between the end of 2016 and early 2017. Interim, MediaTek is considering building another branch of 10nm SoCs, made for upper mid-range devices. The company is also said to be among the first group of TSMC customers (such as Apple) making use of the 10nm fabrication process.
The Helio X30 features quite the CPU design. The application processor has no less than ten cores, with the heavy lifting handled by two Cortex-A73 cores with a max speed of 2.8GHz. Four Cortex-A53 cores clocked at up to 2.2GHz are playing backup, while four low-power Cortex A35 cores with max speeds of 2GHz are used for non-demanding, everyday usage tasks. The SoC supports up to 8GB of RAM and is bundled with a quad-core PowerVR graphics unit. The unit is supposed to be able to handle Google's Daydream VR experience platform as well.
All in all, MediaTek is trying to come up with a high-end offering to rival Qualcomm and Samsung's domineering Snapdragon and Exynos chipsets. Chinese smartphone manufacturers are particularly enthusiastic towards low-cost alternatives to these SoCs, as it lets them offer competitive performance at the country's characteristically aggressive prices.