Chinese electronics company and smartphone maker, Xiaomi, announced today that it has developed its own processor, called Surge S1. The processor will be used in the Xiaomi Mi 5c smartphone.
With the announcement, Xiaomi becomes the fourth company after Samsung, Huawei and Apple to develop its own chip. Surge S1 was produced by Xiaomi’s subsidiary, Pinecone, which was established in 2014 to develop processors for smartphones.
The new Xiaomi Surge S1 is a 64-bit octa-core SoC with four ARM Cortex A53 cores clocked at 2.2GHz and four other power efficient ARM Cortex-A53 cores clocked at 1.4GHz.
The new Xiaomi Surge S1 chipset also has a 32-bit DSP for better voice processing for calls, and also dual microphones for noise reduction. The Xiaomi chip integrates 14bit dual ISP and the company’s own Surge ISP algorithm that claims to improve camera light sensitivity by up to 150 percent, and the dual noise reduction algorithm also preserves detail in low light. This dynamic image processing results into 15 percent less power consumption.
The Mi 5c features a 5.15 inch Full HD (1080p) display, 3GB RAM, 64GB inbuilt storage, and dual SIM support. It runs on Android 6.0 Marshmallow with Xiaomi’s MIUI 8 layer on top Xiaomi has said the phone will be upgradable to Android 7.1 Nougat, and the update will be seeded in March. It also packs a 2860mAh battery with fast charging support. On the camera front, the device sports a 12-megapixel rear-facing camera. At the front, it comes with an 8-megapixel camera.The fingerprint sensor is underneath the home button in the front.
Xiaomi added that the whole process of creating the Surge S1 chipset has taken 28 months. The company also shared GeekBench 4.0 CPU multicore benchmark and GFXBench Manhattan off- screen benchmark, claiming that the Surge S1 beats the Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 and MediaTek Helio P20 in terms of performance.
By making its own processor, Xiaomi is clearly looking to move away from Qualcomm and MediaTek, in order to have a greater control over the hardware and build customizations into the phones. That’s one way to increase profitability after all the company is facing immense pressure in China from other homegrown players, including Oppo, Vivo and Huawei