Microsoft plans on sticking with Qualcomm for Windows Phone chip sets

Microsoft plans on sticking with Qualcomm for Windows Phone chip sets
One of the reasons why some Chinese manufacturers are able to pump out extremely cheap Android handsets, is the low price they pay companies like MediaTek for the CPUs employed on these phones. In China, and some other Asian regions, it is not unusual to find a quad-core powered device selling for the equivalent of $130 USD. The success of the Xiaomi Hongmi (aka the Red Rice) shows that there is demand for low priced value phones.

While Microsoft recently launched an OEM portal to allow small-time producers to manufacture Windows Phone handsets, Microsoft wants to keep the performance of these phones at a certain level. That makes sense, right? If you're McDonald's, you don't award a franchise to someone who is going to cut corners by using horse meat instead of beef. So that is why it makes perfect business sense for Vineet Durani, head of Microsoft's Windows Phone unit in India, to explain that only Qualcomm silicon is being supported by Windows Phone. "Because you are adhering to a certain set of specifications, the performance of all Windows Phone devices is at a level that is acceptable to us," said the executive.

While that means no octa-core Windows Phone handsets for the time being, by the end of this year Qualcomm will be shipping the Snapdragon 615 and the Snapdragon 810. Both octa-core solutions will be in handsets starting next year. The only downside for Microsoft is that this has allowed some Android manufacturers to already start selling octa-core powered handsets that use the MT-6592 chip from MediaTek. Samsung already uses its octa-core Exynos chip in certain variants of its top-shelf Android phones.

source: TimesOfIndia via WMPoweruser



1. 0xFFFF

Posts: 3806; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

Beyond using more affordable processors, the other big reason Chinese phones and devices are less expensive is that the companies that make them are not as greedy as Samsung or Apple. The OnePlus One, for instance, has a more-expensive-than-Mediatek Qualcomm 801 processor and is quite reasonably priced, less than half the price of a Samsung Galaxy S5.

4. dome888

Posts: 86; Member since: Oct 10, 2012

the only reason chinese companies can build it cheap is by making their workers prisoners. MS made the right thing by sticking with Qualcomm an american company.

7. Topcat488

Posts: 1416; Member since: Sep 29, 2012

M$ moved their production to China also... And QualComm is only an American Company by "NAME", like Apple! They produce their chips in Taiwan. O.o

18. james004

Posts: 486; Member since: May 15, 2013

when did you ever hear TSMC's employee suiciding because the they were being prisoned to work? only foxconn does that.

19. sgodsell

Posts: 7459; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

Microsoft only supports Qualcomm. When there is so many other Arm processors from Nvidia, Broadcom, Mediatek, Rockchip, Samsung, STM, and many more. All of which support and already run Android. Microsoft has no plans to support any other CPUs from other manufacturers, because Microsoft has vested interest in Qualcomm.

20. sgodsell

Posts: 7459; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

I should have added that Microsoft wants other OEMS to sign up and make WP devices. But in China, India and other emerging markets use what ever components they can find to cut the costs down. So chip vendors like Broadcom, Mediatek, Rockchip, and more are used. Even Samsung uses their own chips like the Exynos. Soon LG is going to start producing their own Arm chips for their phones. WP will never grow in the emerging markets because of the limitations. I guess that's why Microsoft and Nokia went with Android instead of using WP for the line up of Nokia X devices.

13. 0xFFFF

Posts: 3806; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

All the big manufacturers use Chinese or equivalent cost labor to help build their phones. It's not a labor cost delta that results in the enormous end customer price differences. As for how the workers are treated, in general I really don't think a Chinese company would treat their workers worse than a foreign company would.

2. grahaman27

Posts: 364; Member since: Apr 05, 2013

Do they have a choice? What other options are there if you want LTE?

5. npaladin2000

Posts: 165; Member since: Nov 06, 2011

NVIDIA has a softmodem for Tegra 4i now.

12. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

This is a good point. Any other solution would mean getting together with Motorola or Samsung. Staying with Qualcomm is the easier option IMO. But...I thought Nokia could come up with something like Motorola did for LTE? In Moto Android phones....its Qualcomm hardware and some in house stuff by Moto. Same for house Samsung hardware. As for Nvidia...they have been hit n miss for phones. Moto only used them for 1 phone then went on to develop their own hardware. It caused some delays...but in the end it was worth it.

14. nokia12

Posts: 610; Member since: Nov 19, 2013

mediatek 6595 has integrated LTE and all of their new chips from now will have integrated LTE ..

3. brrunopt

Posts: 742; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

I don't see how the performance is a excuse.. A QC MediaTek is at level or better than a low end Snapdragon (S200/400) Also NEO is still keeping theirs statement that they are working WP 8.1 for the NEO M1 (with a 1.3GHz MediaTek MT6582 ) .ยด Is this with Microsoft support or are they (NEO) changing WP to support Mediatek SOCs ?

6. npaladin2000

Posts: 165; Member since: Nov 06, 2011

On the upside, this has to be really annoying for Samsung. On the downside, this means no Tegra/GeForce graphics for Windows Phone users. On the other upside, maybe they'll give up and come back to Android. :)

8. 0xFFFF

Posts: 3806; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

Microsoft has some sort of deal with Nvidia for tablet chips in the Surface RT. At least so far, Nvidia hasn't made a chip that will do well in the phone as they are just too power hungry. So it doesn't really matter. It'll be years, if ever, when Nvidia has a real phone chip.

10. grahaman27

Posts: 364; Member since: Apr 05, 2013

That's a myth, nvidia's omition from phones has always been due to lack of CDMA and integrates LTE support. Their biggest hit was with the HTC one x, but it didn't support LTE and was soon after obsoleted.

9. xoxoGeorges

Posts: 209; Member since: Jul 11, 2013

Thank god. Keep the trash out.

11. CX3NT3_713

Posts: 2361; Member since: Apr 18, 2011

What's the advantages, of having a octa core handset, warming up in your hands? (I assume it does)

15. express77 unregistered

Didn't qualcomm mocked octacore mediatech chips not long ago? Now they are making their.

16. 0xFFFF

Posts: 3806; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

Qualcomm called 64-bit a gimmick, mocked eight core chips, and now are going as fast as they can to make both. They are basically a company that did a good job with Krait for 32 bit and then stopped working. Now they are back to working hard. Maybe 2015 they will have some better chips.

17. Sriniva1995

Posts: 44; Member since: Nov 06, 2013

Hey hold on, qualcomm has octacore processors how is it that windiws wont have octacore

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