Chip designer Qualcomm has announced that it has completed the acquisition of smaller chip manufacturer Nuvia. The company says it plans to release self-designed chips in the second half of 2022.
Nuvia is a relatively unknown start-up in the Arm chip market. It was founded by three chip designers. Gerard Williams worked at Apple, Manu Gulati has designed SoCs for both Apple and Google, and John Bruno has a history at AMD. The company focused on completely self-designed Arm chips for server applications. Nuvia had already designed its own processor core and SoC. That Phoenix core seems to have a lot of potential and could compete in terms of performance per watt with the latest chips from Apple, Intel, AMD and Qualcomm. The company has not yet brought any products to the market.
Qualcomm still depends on Arm for its designs
Qualcomm is one of the largest players in the field of Arm processors but does not design them entirely from scratch. Instead, the company licenses designs from Arm and applies those to its own chips. The company focuses almost exclusively on smartphones and tablets, although it is also slowly expanding into the computer market. In the server market, the Arm architecture is being used more and more, but Qualcomm’s processors have yet to gain a sizable foothold.
Now that Qualcomm has acquired a number of very capable chip designers through the acquisition of Nuvia, it hopes to change this by coming up with its own chips. These proprietary designs should be used across the company’s portfolio, starting with a Snapdragon chip for laptops. The first chips should hit the market in the second half of 2022.
Nuvia had raised a total of 293 million dollars in two previous investment rounds, approximately 246 million euros. Qualcomm has now put down 1.4 billion dollars for the acquisition, writes The Register, which is about 1.2 billion euros.