In January 2022 (January 1400), Qualcomm acquired a company called Nuvia, which was active in the field of designing custom chips based on ARM architecture. In this way, Qualcomm wanted to compete more with Apple’s custom chips.
Previously, it was said that Qualcomm wants to introduce Apple Silicon competitor chips with the name Nuvia; Now, it seems that the American chip maker plans to release its custom chips under the Oryon name and no longer use the Nuvia title to get rid of its legal dispute with Arm.
After acquiring Novia, Qualcomm CEO Cristiano Amon talked about the new chips and their competition with Apple’s custom chips. Qualcomm used to use ARM’s own production cores in the construction of processors, and now it wants to enter the world of custom core design by taking advantage of the experience of Nuvia engineers and using ARM’s instruction set (ISA); The same way that Apple traveled in the last decade and became the center of attention with its powerful and optimized chips.
What is Qualcomm Oryon?
Oryon is the name of the CPU cores in the new Qualcomm chips. What sets Oryon apart from the Kryo cores that Qualcomm currently uses is that the new cores are custom and designed according to ARM’s guidelines.
Until now, Qualcomm has relied on ARM cores in the production of its chips. You’ve probably heard of Cortex cores. These cores are completely designed by ARM and the license to use them is available to manufacturing companies such as Qualcomm. For example, Snapdragon 8 generation 2 was launched with Cortex-A710, Cortex-A715, Cortex-X3 and Cortex-A510 cores and is considered one of the flagship chips of this company. In fact, all manufacturers can use ARM cores in the production of their chips.
On the other hand, manufacturers can take advantage of licensing instructions to produce their own proprietary chips; The same way that Apple took, and now Qualcomm wants to become a competitor for the Apple Silicon family by designing its own Oryon chips. The manufacturer has licensed Armv9 instructions, and is likely to start producing new Armv9-based chips in the second half of next year.
Note that it is not the first time that Qualcomm is involved in designing the processing cores of its processors; In the past, Qualcomm has a history of designing processors called Snapdragon 800; A processor powered by Krait’s proprietary architecture based on the ARM instruction set; But in the era of 64-bit processors, it is the first time that Qualcomm is keying the design project of CPU cores.
When will the Qualcomm Oryon chip be released?
After acquiring Novia, Qualcomm announced that it will start production of the first chip based on ARM architecture in the second half of 2022, and these products will be released a year later. Since Qualcomm is committed to delivering its new chip within 90 days of its announcement, it doesn’t seem like it can finish production of Oryon chips that quickly; The first SoC featuring Oryon cores is expected to be announced at next year’s Snapdragon Summit, in early 2024.
The first custom Oryon chips are likely to be used in Windows PCs; Oryon is also expected to be used in smartphone processors after some time. The new computing chipset will likely be unveiled at the Snapdragon Summit 2023; So it seems logical that Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 chips based on Oryon cores will be launched at the 2024 summit. In the first step, Oryon cores are only used in high-end products; But it is possible that it will enter more categories in the future.
How will the Qualcomm Oryon chip perform?
What people expect from a portable personal computer is speed, performance, less heat generation and long battery life; Intel and AMD cover the speed and performance parameters to some extent; But in the field of productivity and charging, they appear disappointing, on the other side of the field of current Qualcomm chips for Windows ARM, charging and productivity are covered and do not hold the heart in the field of performance. None of the companies can satisfy all the demands of the Windows user. Qualcomm wants to change the situation with Oryon chips.
In a general perspective, Apple is the only brand that can currently cover all the user’s needs from portable devices. Apple’s line of Macs, based on custom Arm processors, are perfect for any kind of creative work, and their batteries last all day. It’s exactly the kind of hardware we’ve come to expect from Qualcomm. It is likely that the release of Qualcomm’s new chip will coincide with the unveiling of Apple’s new M series chip. Anyway, as it seems, there will be a close competition between the two companies and it remains to be seen which one will be the winner.