Become a MacRumors Supporter for $25/year with no ads, private forums, and more!

Qualcomm to Acquire Chip Startup Nuvia, Founded by Ex-Apple Chip Designers, for $1.4 Billion

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
51,073
12,624


Qualcomm has reached an agreement to acquire Nuvia, a chip startup company founded by former Apple chip designers, for $1.4 billion, in an effort to compete with Apple and Intel (via Reuters).



Nuvia was founded by three former Apple chip designers that worked on the A-series chips for the iPhone. Among Nuvia's key projects is a custom CPU core design set to be used in servers, but Qualcomm is reportedly planning a broad use of Nuvia's processors in flagship smartphones and laptops, as well as vehicle infotainment and driver-assistance systems.

Qualcomm hopes to re-establish a leading position in chip performance after years of well-publicized patent licensing litigation with Apple and disputes with regulatory authorities. The deal is expected to help Qualcomm reduce its reliance on Arm, which is being purchased by rival company Nvidia for $40 billion.

Most of Qualcomm's current chip designs are licensed directly from Arm. While Nuvia's chips use Arm's underlying architecture, they are custom designs. This could help to lower licensing costs to Arm in the short term and aid the move to a rival architecture in the long term.

Both Qualcomm and Nuvia have had significant disputes with Apple in recent years. In 2017, Apple sued Qualcomm for charging unfair royalties for "technologies they have nothing to do with." One of Nuvia's founders, Gerard Williams III, was sued by Apple for breach of contract. Apple accused Williams of recruiting Apple employees to Nuvia while he was still employed at the company, but it did not bring charges against Nuvia itself.

Article Link: Qualcomm to Acquire Chip Startup Nuvia, Founded by Ex-Apple Chip Designers, for $1.4 Billion
 

FightTheFuture

macrumors 65816
Oct 19, 2003
1,422
1,875
that town east of ann arbor
Apple’s DNA is in just about evrything these days. Meanwhile Google stills makes money by selling our data to advertisers.
For sure, not the same business models at all. But it should be more understood that Google and Facebook literally have to do nothing to continue making money while Apple has to fight and build on top of their offerings to stay in the game.
 
Comment

BootsWalking

macrumors 65816
Feb 1, 2014
1,360
8,007
Apple’s DNA is in just about evrything these days. Meanwhile Google stills makes money by selling our data to advertisers.
"Through its placement as the default search engine in the Safari browser for the iPhone and iPad, Google covers 36% of search queries in the U.S. Consequently, Apple devices accounted for nearly half of Google search traffic in 2019, according to the lawsuit.

Google pays Apple handsomely for that placement. The DOJ cites "public estimates" saying that Google pays Apple between $8 billion and $12 billion per year to be the default search engine on Apple products.

Apple accounts for the Google payment as part of its services business, which had $46.2 billion in sales in fiscal 2019, accounting for 17.7% of the company's total revenue."

Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/10/21/apple-services-success-story-bolstered-by-huge-google-payments.html
 
Comment

Anson_431

macrumors regular
Sep 16, 2016
122
304
Was it just me or does this feel like a reactive acquisition? But then hey, at least we get to see competition which is a very good thing.

Let's just hope this doesn't turn into another legal battle of patents in years' time. LOL
 
  • Like
Reactions: amartinez1660
Comment

CWallace

macrumors G3
Aug 17, 2007
8,255
4,729
Seattle, WA
I think I read somewhere that Williams started Nuvia in part because he was frustrated that Apple didn’t want to get into the server market which he felt there was great opportunity with the Apple chips.

Well that would explain why Intel and AMD were not interested. :p

Though one would think Amazon or Google might have been interested (and perhaps they were) - especially Amazon since their Graviton CPU is based on ARM.
 
  • Like
Reactions: rp2011
Comment

rp2011

macrumors 68000
Oct 12, 2010
1,803
1,887
It was obvious that Nuvia was going to shake things up, but I did not see this coming.
With Microsoft already partnered with Qualcomm, this is HUGE news. With the massive performance improvements that Nuvia is boasting, this gives all three companies the opportunity to dethrone Intel and AMD, while also nipping Apple’s sails.
Expect Windows laptops that will meet or exceed Apple’s M series chips real soon.
 
Last edited:
Comment

LeadingHeat

macrumors 6502
Oct 3, 2015
385
931
It was obvious that Nuvia was got to shake things up, but I did not see this coming.
With Microsoft already patterned with Qualcomm, this is HUGE news. With the massive performance improvements that Nuvia is boasting, this gives all three companies the opportunity to dethrone Intel and AMD, while also nipping Apple’s sails.
Expect Windows laptops that will meet or exceed Apple’s M series chips real soon.
Potentially we could see some performance leaps if all that comes true, but if they are just now acquiring this company and its trade secrets, it will likely be years down the road. Which means Apple will have had years of improvements on it. I could see a catch up, but not anytime soon.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Solomani
Comment
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.