- Xiaomi has reportedly abandoned the Surge chipset programme.
- The Surge S1 was the only chipset Xiaomi used in one of its affordable smartphones.
- Xiaomi is focusing on low-power Bluetooth chips as well as RF chips.
If you are a fan of Xiaomi and its products, you must be remembering the Surge series of chipsets. Xiaomi took to developing its own custom chipsets back in 2018 and it launched a phone that was using its Surge S1 chip instead of a Qualcomm or MediaTek chipset. At the time, Xiaomi was heralded as one of the few companies in the world to develop its own custom chip in the ranks of Samsung, Apple and Huawei. However, it has been two years since we have seen any development on that front and now, it is said that Xiaomi may have dumped the project altogether.
In a recent report from GizmoChina, an insider familiar with the happenings suggested that Xiaomi is currently not focusing on projects that complicated and expensive. Instead of developing an application processor, Xiaomi is now focusing on working on low-power Bluetooth chips as well as RF chips and other smaller peripherals. This new strategy is different from what Huawei follows in the chipset business.
The report also mentions that Xiaomi is looking to maintain a balance between developing a competitive product and one that can deliver a financial benefit.
Xiaomi has been relentlessly relying on Qualcomm and MediaTek chipsets in the last few years for its affordable phones. Last year, Xiaomi made a mega move to using MediaTek's Helio G90T chipset on its more popular Redmi Note 8 Pro and it saw success. The more recent Redmi Note 9 Pro series saw Xiaomi use a Qualcomm Snapdragon 720G chipset and it seems that Xiaomi is willing to switch between these two chip vendors.
The Surge S1 chip never sold in a phone outside China - the Mi 5C was the only phone that used the S1 chip. It was expected that the Surge S2 would take the performance to the next level with more powerful cores. This would help Xiaomi optimise the hardware in a better way for its custom MIUI software. However, it was said that the project faced a few hurdles and Xiaomi abandoned the project.
Lately, Xiaomi has been focusing on improving other areas in its phones instead of the main chipset. The recently launched Mi 10 in China comes with 33W fast wired and wireless charging system while the Pro variant can support up to 65W fast charging. Xiaomi is also working on a 100W fast wired charging system but that project is yet to see the light of the day.