AMD may be designing CPUs and GPUs, but the American chip designer doesn’t know much about networking. Never mind, according to the Taiwanese site DigiTimes, AMD is in the process of developing its own network chips… but not on its own.
With the amount of know-how and patents surrounding wireless communications, it is impossible today to develop a complete chip from scratch. This is why AMD has approached Taiwanese MediaTek with whom it is expected to develop its own Wi-Fi chip.
AMD here seems to want to take inspiration from Intel, which most often tries to sell not just an SoC, but a complete platform – this is notably the case with the new EVO solution, formerly Project Athena.
This tactic not only works for Intel machines, but also for AMD laptops. Indeed, all the machines in AMD Ryzen 4000 that we we had in our hands were equipped with Wi-Fi 6 AX200 chips signed… Intel.
AMD’s approach is a classic in the semiconductor world: Apple has done the same for its GPUs with Imagination Technologies or with Intel for 4G modems.
MediaTek, the super crutch
AMD is not alone in using MediaTek to expand its product portfolio. Recently, he’s his lifelong rival Intel which announced a partnership with the Taiwanese for the development of 5G chip integrated into laptops.
It must be said that if MediaTek can do everything: SoC for smartphone, modem, video decoding chip, audio chip, chips for IoT, wired or wireless networks, etc. Its chips are everywhere on the planet. Even though performance is not always top notch, MediaTek SoCs for smartphones are less powerful than their equivalents from Qualcomm, HiSilicon or Apple, they remain effective.
And not only does the company sell its chips to partners, it also offers a custom chip creation service (ASIC Services). A service that is based on know-how and the more than 7,000 patents filed over the decades.
It is obviously up to AMD to successfully integrate MediaTek’s technologies into its own solutions. And, perhaps, to go further and end up, like Intel, in developing a complete platform.
Source : DigiTimes