MediaTek Inc. is a Taiwanese fabless semiconductor company that provides chips for wireless communications, High-definition television, handheld mobile devices like smartphones and tablet computers, navigation systems, consumer multimedia products and Digital subscriber line services as well as optical disc drives.
Headquartered in Hsinchu, Taiwan, the company has 25 offices worldwide and was the third largest fabless IC designer worldwide in 2016. Mediatek was founded in 1997. MediaTek also provides its customers with reference designs.
Snapdragon is a suite of system on a chip (SoC) semiconductor products for mobile devices designed and marketed by Qualcomm Technologies Inc. The Snapdragon central processing unit (CPU) uses the ARM RISC instruction set. A single SoC may include multiple CPU cores, an Adreno graphics processing unit (GPU), a Snapdragon wireless modem, a Hexagon Digital signal processor (DSP), a Qualcomm Spectra Image Signal Processor (ISP) and other software and hardware to support a smartphone’s global positioning system (GPS), camera, video, audio, gesture recognition and AI acceleration. As such, Qualcomm often refers to the Snapdragon as a “mobile platform” (e.g., Snapdragon 865 5G Mobile Platform). Snapdragon semiconductors are embedded in devices of various systems, including Android, Windows Phone and netbooks. They are also used in cars, wearable devices and other devices. In addition to the processors, the Snapdragon line includes modems, wi-fi chips and mobile charging products.
The first Snapdragon product to consumer device manufacturers was the QSD8250, which was released in December 2007. It included the first 1 GHz processor for mobile phones. Qualcomm introduced its “Krait” microarchitecture in the second generation of Snapdragon SoCs in 2011, allowing each processor core to adjust its speed based on the device’s needs. At the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show, Qualcomm introduced the first of the Snapdragon 800 series and renamed prior models as the 200, 400 and 600 series. Several new iterations have been introduced since, such as the Snapdragon 805, 810, 615 and 410. Qualcomm re-branded its modem products under the Snapdragon name in December 2014. As of 2018, Asus, HP and Lenovo have begun selling laptops with Snapdragon-based CPUs running Windows 10 under the name “Always Connected PCs”, marking an entry into the PC market for Qualcomm and the ARM architecture.