Some upcoming Nokia phones to be powered by Xiaomi's Surge S1 chipset
Earlier this year, Chinese manufacturer Xiaomi announced a chipset it made on its own, the Surge S1. It houses an octa-core processor, made up of four 2.2GHz Cortex-A53 cores for heavier calculations and four 1.4GHz Cortex-A53 cores for lighter tasks. It's paired with the Mali-T680 MP4 graphics unit. All in all, a good solution for upper mid-range smartphones, such as the Xiaomi Mi 5c, which is powered by the Surge S1.
It looks like the Chinese brand has won over a customer for its chip, and it happens to be Nokia. That is, HMD Global, which is the Finnish company that owns and maintains the brand. Rumors from the East claim that the companies signed a deal to bring the Surge S1 to future Nokia phones – not flagship models, but not entry-level handsets, either.
It isn't clear whether these models will be China-only handsets, or globally sold ones. We don't really know how the Surge S1 handles worldwide LTE networks, and it most certainly won't work with US carriers due to the many specifics involved in adapting a smartphone for the North American market.
But still, that's quite the breakthrough for Xiaomi, and it could motivate the Chinese brand to build increasingly better and faster chipsets. The industry could certainly do with more alternatives to Qualcomm and MediaTek processors.