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May 26, 2014

MediaTek Will Not Launch Chipsets Supporting Windows Phone Anytime Soon




There has been a lot of talk regarding MediaTek’s alleged adoption of Windows Phone platform in its chipset design, but nothing concrete has emerged yet.

Even though some Chinese vendors have claimed that their Windows Phone handsets will be powered by MediaTek chipsets, and thus will be much cheaper than those equipped with Qualcomm’s SoCs, Microsoft and MediaTek were mum on the matter. In fact, Microsoft announced at some point that for the time being, it only supported Qualcomm reference design chipsets for Windows Phone, so MediaTek’s products are out of the question for the moment. It’s unclear why the Redmond-based company does not wish to co-opt another chipset manufacturer that would be able to produce cheaper SoCs for Windows Phone, but Microsoft might not be the one to blame here. It appears that MediaTek plans to focus a considerable amount of its production on the 4G smartphone market, which is now booming in China.

Digitimes reports that MediaTek is less likely to launch any smartphone chipset platform for Windows Phone this year, as the company is now looking for a way to boost its production of 4G chipsets. The information was provided by sources familiar with the matter, who also claim that MediaTek will try to ramp up its 3G chipsets production for handset makers in China, which are now looking to expand their businesses overseas. The first Windows Phone handsets launched by Chinese OEMs should arrive in the second half of 2014, even though some of these vendors are reluctant to releasing devices powered by Microsoft’s mobile platform due to higher costs than initially estimated.

Even though Microsoft has offered Windows Phone license for free, most Chinese OEMs are not ready to adopt the platform for mass production due to high costs. MediaTek’s chipsets could have reduced these costs considerably if the chipset vendor had decided to jump into the Windows Phone caravan and start producing SoCs for this mobile operating system. Anyway, the good news is that Qualcomm has already launched QRD (Qualcomm Reference Design) smartphones for Windows Phone, so Chinese vendors should start working on their handsets. Given the fact that the information reported by Digitimes hasn’t been confirmed yet, we suggest our readers to take it with a grain of salt until one of the two companies comes forward with an official statement. It’s also worth mentioning that MediaTek can eventually start producing chipsets for Windows Phone beginning next year, so not all is lost for the Chinese handset makers looking for ways to cut costs on manufacturing.

MediaTek logo
Image credits to MediaTek

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