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Paper said: MediaTek to lag in 10nm-chip race

MediaTek may suffer a setback in the ongoing 10nm mobile chip race as the Chinese-language Economic Daily News (EDN) has reported that Xiaomi Technology has decided to not develop a customized 10nm Helio X30 chip with MediaTek.

According to MediaTek's roadmap, the mobile solution vendor will begin to roll out its first 10nm chip, the Helio X30, at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) in February, with commercial devices equipped with the chips to hit the market in the second quarter of 2017.

The road has been bumpy for MediaTek to develop its 10nm chips as only two smartphone vendors, Meizu and LeEco, have so far committed to develop 10nm solutions with MediaTek.

However, LeEco appears to have been forced to cancel its plans to develop 10nm chips due to its financial constraints, leaving Meizu as the single client that might proceed with its 10nm MediaTek project, said the paper.

MediaTek's two other major clients, Oppo and Vivo, which are expected to ship over 120 million and 100 million smartphones, respectively, in 2017, both have not committed to using 10nm chips from MediaTek, the paper added.

MediaTek has previously dismissed a market report indicating that it plans to cut its 10nm chip orders at TSMC by nearly 50%. But MediaTek might eventually be forced to revise downward its 10nm-chip demand outlook for 2017 if Xiaomi's case is true.