Xiaomi has announced the Surge S1, the company’s first ever processor, at an event in China. The company has worked on the chip for the past 28 months with Pinecone, a subsidiary Xiaomi launched to research and develop the processor, and it will launch with the upcoming Xiaomi Mi 5c.
The Surge S1 is an octa-core SoC with four high-performance ARM Cortex A53 cores running at 2.2 GHz and four power-efficient ARM Cortex A53 at 1.4 GHz. These are optimized with ARM’s big.LITTLE processing tech to help deliver “peak-performance capacity, higher sustained performance, and increased parallel processing performance, at significantly lower average power.”
The Surge S1 uses Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company’s 28nm High Performance Computing process technology, and implements a Mali T860 GPU, which is said to be 40% more power efficient than the previous-gen Mali-T760, and a 32-bit Digital Signal Processor, supporting VoLTE and 16 kHz sampling. Xiaomi is also bragging of the benefits of the chip’s image signal processor (ISP) which it developed in-house. The 14-bit dual ISP is said to provide superior light sensitivity and a “dual noise reduction algorithm” to help produce better photos in low light.
The new chipset supports up to 4K@30fps video playback, video capture in 4K@30fps, 1080p@120fps and 720p@240/fps. It also supports device displays up to 2560×1600 resolution and 9V2A fast charging.
Xiaomi has become the fourth smartphone manufacturer in the world to build its own chips after Samsung, Apple and Huawei, which are currently the three largest global OEMs. I wonder what this means for Qualcomm and Mediatek, seeing that they are losing a lot of business to their very own customers.