We are hearing about Google gearing up to develop its own processors. For the upcoming Pixel devices it seems like a custom SoC is under process & being designed, although this news is just according to some sources & the company is yet to reveal its planning on this one. Google has also recently hired Manu Gulati, who is among one of the brains behind the design of many Apple’s custom A series chips.
The company is already battling in the market field with the major competitors like Apple & Samsung after moving on to the Pixel smartphones from the previous one i.e Nexus. Both the competitive brands are already producing their product specific processors for their flagship phones. Google also seems to be following the trend & demand of the user, so may bring up its own SoC soon with the upcoming Pixel Series of smartphones to strengthen their position in the market among their users. Since Google’s Pixel is a renowned High-End smartphone, the customized SoC will definitely help the brand to develop itself more closely into an independent direction.
The Current Scenario Of Google Devices
At Present the company is relying with the Qualcomm SoC (major mobile processor developer) for its Pixel range of smartphones & also Qualcomm is popular in the flagship tier of smartphones. However most of the brands rely on such processor developing companies just because the process of designing it expensive as well as time taking, so they go for the product specialist to save both.
SoC designing firm like ARM has also made available modern licensing & development options to be used by all the other major mobile SoC vendors that currently use the product from ARM itself, thus had opened the doors for smaller companies that will to start designing their own chips.
New & Recent SoC Designs
Recently Xiaomi has also introduced its own Surge S1 chip & launched it with Mi 5C smartphone. So it has been made easy to design & develop chips with these quick licensing arrangements that is being offered by ARM. The firm also offers a ‘Built On ARM Cortex Technology’ tier, that will allow the user company to use pre-existing CPU design while making some minor adjustments to it & market them under their brand names.
What Google May Do?
Likewise, Google as well can opt to custom its core route through getting licensed & making some major changes to the available chip accordingly. This is not being done for the very first time, Qualcomm already did this with Kryo & Krait, Samsung to Mongoose cores & Apple used to develop its A-series Processors. However Google can also go for setting a new DynamicIQ adding an extra SoC processing unit for enhancing imaging capabilities & a dedicated unit for “Artificial Intelligence” as well.
Another option with Google may be of getting a chance to combine some of its developments to its Cloud Tensor Processing Units (TPU) hardware with mobile, which are specifically optimized for machine learning.
Possible Reason For Google To Develop Its Custom SoC
Anyone may think like I am thinking as the processors from Qualcomm are already richly featured & power packed with all the essential technologies like 4G LTE modem, Fast Charging Facility & Bluetooth that too at reasonable costs. Then the big question is Why Google needs its own custom SoC? Why the brand wants to start from a scratch? Why Google wants to design its own chip at such higher expenses?
Possible reasons may include, The company may be willing to bring up something that still doesn’t exists with anyother brand. Another reason may include the company’s focus towards dedicated power & efficiency for performing certain specific tasks. Also the company has recently demonstrated some progress in its machine learning results that include text & voice recognition in real time. Google still lacks behind in hardware acceleration while performing image recognition with the Apples custom SoC by almost six times. The need to improve hardware acceleration for such tasks that require specialized processing powers may be the reson of custom SoC designing with Google.
To conclude we will just have to wait & see whether Manu Gulati’s expertise will be able to fullfil the gaps between the technology requirements that Google is lacking & needs to build the new customized SoC.