MediaTek

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MediaTek Inc.
Native name
聯發科技
Public
Traded asTWSE: 2454
IndustryFabless semiconductors
FoundedMay 28, 1997; 23 years ago (1997-05-28)
Headquarters,
Taiwan
Area served
Worldwide
Key people
  • Ming-Kai Tsai (Chairman)
  • JChing-Jiang Hsieh (Vice Chairman)
  • Rick Tsai (CEO)
  • Joe Chen (President)[1]
ProductsDimensity Series, and Helio X, P, G, A series smartphone products. Product numbers are always MTxxxx, except for RTxxxx (Wi-Fi products) which represents legacy numbering from an acquired company (Ralink).
Production output
1.5 billion devices per year (2018)[2] and 14% market-share of global smartphone sales (Q3 2017)[3]
BrandsDimensity, Helio (smartphones) and Autus (automotive)
Services
  • SoC sales
  • ASIC sales
  • System engineering and reference designs
RevenueIncrease NT$246.22 billion (US$8.62 billion) (2019)[4]
Increase NT$9.45 billion (US$331.27 million) (2019)[4]
Increase NT$23.03 billion (US$806.61 million) (2019)[4]
Total assetsIncrease NT$414.19 billion (US$14.51 billion) (2019)[4]
Total equityIncrease NT$312.75 billion (US$10.95 billion) (2019)[4]
Number of employees
17,449 (2019)[4]
Subsidiaries
  • Airoha Technology Corp.
  • EcoNet Wireless
  • ILI Technology Corp.
  • MStar Semiconductor
  • Nephos Inc.
  • Richtek Technology
Websitewww.mediatek.com
A Mediatek MT6575A inside of an LG E455 Android smartphone
A MediaTek MT8560BAAG inside of a Blu-ray player
A Mediatek MT1389DE inside of a DVD player

MediaTek Inc. (Chinese: 聯發科技股份有限公司; pinyin: Liánfā Kējì Gǔfèn Yǒuxiàn Gōngsī) 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.[5]

Headquartered in Hsinchu, the company has 25 offices worldwide and was the third largest fabless IC designer worldwide in 2016.[6][7] Mediatek was founded in 1997.[8][9] The company also provides its customers with reference designs.[10]

Corporate history[edit]

MediaTek was originally a unit of the Taiwanese firm, United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC), tasked with designing chipsets for home entertainment products.[8] On May 28, 1997, the unit was spun off and incorporated. MediaTek Inc. was listed on the Taiwan Stock Exchange (TSEC) under the "2454" code on July 23, 2001.[11]

The company started out designing chipsets for optical drives and subsequently expanded into chips for DVD players, digital TVs, mobile phones, smartphones and tablets.[8][10][12] In general MediaTek has had a strong record of gaining market share and displacing competitors after entering new markets.[10][13][14]

The company launched a division to design products for mobile devices in 2004. Seven years later, it was taking orders for more than 500 million mobile system-on-chip units per annum, which included products for both feature phones and smart devices.[8] By providing extensive system engineering assistance the company allowed many smaller companies and new entrants to enter a mobile phone market that had previously been dominated by large, often vertically integrated corporations that had long been broadly entrenched in the telecommunications industry. The mobile chip market quickly became the main growth driver for the company.[8][10][13][14]

At Mobile World Congress 2014, MediaTek unveiled its new brand "Everyday Genius", dubbing the term "Super-mid market", with the vision and aiming to make smartphones more accessible affordable to the wider market.[15]

As of November 2014, over 1500 mobile models accounting for 700 million units were shipped globally in 2014, using MediaTek chips, and the company posted revenues of US$5.3 billion in the first half of 2014, nearly as much as the whole of 2013.[16] The revenue growth was however partly due to revenue recognition from the acquisition of MStar which became effective at the beginning of 2014.[17]

On November 25, 2019, MediaTek and Intel announced a partnership to bring 5G to PCs in 2021.[18][19]

Acquisitions[edit]

In 2005, MediaTek acquired Inprocomm, a wireless semiconductor design company producing 802.11a, b and a/g chips.[20]

On September 10, 2007, MediaTek announced its intention to buy Analog Devices cellular radio and baseband chipset divisions for US$350 million.[21] The acquisition was finalised by January 11, 2008.[22]

On May 5, 2011, MediaTek acquired Ralink Technology Corporation,[23] gaining products and expertise for Wi-Fi technology for mobile and non-mobile applications, as well as for wired DSL and Ethernet connectivity.

On April 11, 2012, MediaTek acquired Coresonic, a global producer of digital signal processing products based in Linköping, Sweden. Coresonic became a wholly owned subsidiary of MediaTek in Europe.[24]

On June 22, 2012, MediaTek announced it would acquire rival Taiwanese chipset designer MStar Semiconductor Inc., which held a strong market share position in digital television chips. The initial phase of the deal saw MediaTek taking a 48 percent stake, with an option to purchase the remaining stake at a later date.[25] The following merger between MediaTek and MStar was delayed by antitrust concerns in China and South Korea and finalized on February 1, 2014.[26]

Financial performance[edit]

Yearly net sales and operating income in million NT$[27]
2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Net sales 52,942 74,779 68,016 77,311 71,988 53,842 99,263 136,056 213,063[a] 213,255 275,512
Income from operations 23,816 31,427 17,090 21,447 17,267 4,840 12,403 25,244 47,241 25,908 23,076
  1. ^ Includes sales contribution from MStar acquisition

MediaTek's financial results have been subject to variation as the financial success of different product lines fluctuated. MediaTek's relatively strong sales in 2009/2010 was based on its strong market position for feature phone chipsets. Smartphone and tablet products contributed to MediaTek's sales and income increase in 2013,[28] while revenue recognition from the acquisition of MStar Semiconductor, which became effective in February 2014, as well as a continuing strong position for smartphone and tablet solutions, were the main reasons for the sales growth seen in 2014.[29] In 2014 smartphone chips accounted for approximately 50–55% of revenue, followed by digital home products (25–30%, includes digital television chips), tablet chips (5–10%), feature phone chips (5–10%) and Wi-Fi products (5–10%).[30]

MediaTek started shipping chips with integrated 4G LTE baseband in volume in the second half of 2014, later than its largest competitor Qualcomm.[31] The additional cost of the separate baseband chip required in every 4G handset made MediaTek's offerings more expensive and prompted some of its larger customers, like Alcatel One Touch and ZTE, to choose competing SoCs like the Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 and 410 platforms, negatively affecting MediaTek's revenue stream.[32]

MediaTek's stock has been trading on the Taiwan Stock Exchange under the symbol TWSE: 2454.

Product Announcements[edit]

The MT8135 system-on-chip (SoC) for tablets announced in July, 2013 was the industry's first chip to implement the new ARM big.LITTLE technology for heterogeneous multi-processing.[33][34] A variant of the MT8135 was used by Amazon in its Kindle Fire HD tablet models.[35] Also on November 20, 2013, MediaTek launched the MT6592 SoC, the first system-on-chip (SoC) with eight CPU cores which could be used simultaneously,[36] in contrast to competing SoCs with eight physical cores of which only a subset could be active at any given time. The "True Octa-Core" trademark was registered to emphasize the difference in marketing materials.

On January 7, 2014, MediaTek announced the development of the world's first "multimode receiver" for wireless charging. In contrast to existing implementations it is compatible with both inductive and resonant charging.[37] The resulting MT3188 wireless charging chip, certified by both the Power Matters Alliance and the Wireless Power Consortium was announced on February 24, 2014.[38]

On February 25, 2014, MediaTek announced the MT6732, and the MT6330. The SoC MT6630 supports 802.11a/b/g/n/ac WiFi, Bluetooth, ANT+, GPS and FM radio.[39][40]

On May 12, 2015, MediaTek announced their Helio X20, which features the industry's first tri-cluster CPU and first CPU with 10 core configuration. It also integrates MediaTek's first modem compatible with CDMA2000.[41] Tri-cluster CPUs were later adopt by HiSilicon in 2018, Qualcomm and Samsung Exynos SoCs in 2019.[42][43][44]

MediaTek collaborated with Google on the first Ultra HD TV platform for Android TV, resulting in the development of the MT5595 digital television SoC.[45] The product first shipped in LCD TV models made by Sony.[46]

On November 26, 2019, MediaTek announced their 5G SoC Dimensity 1000, the world's first mobile SoC supporting AV1.[47]

Criticism and controversies[edit]

On April 8, 2020, MediaTek published a post title "Why MediaTek Stands Behind Our Benchmarking Practices", and later that day AnandTech published an article MediaTek's Sports Mode.[48][49] MediaTek said Sports Mode is designed to show full capabilities during benchmarks, that its standard practice in the industry, and their device makers can choose to enable it or not.[48] AnandTech pointed out Sports Mode was also being applied to benchmarks intended on measuring user experience benchmarks, providing otherwise untenable results. And that similar high performance modes from other device makers only turn on if chosen by the user, not from automatic app detection from a whitelist. And that they have criticized other vendors such as Samsung Exynos and HiSilicon for past cheating practices.[49]

On April 14, 2020, Qualcomm responded saying they don't use whitelisting as they consider it cheating.[50] On April 16, 2020, Oppo claimed that they tried to remove Sports Mode, but did not know it was still cached, hence it was removed in a firmware update.[51] And UL delisted several MediaTek Helio SoCs from their 3DMark and PCMark rankings.[52]

Product list[edit]

Systems-on-chip[edit]

Modems[edit]

Model number fab Wireless radio technologies Compatible with Released
MT6280[53] DC-HSPA+, W-CDMA, TD-SCDMA, EDGE and GSM/GPRS MT2523
MT6290[54] 28 nm LTE R9 (4G), DC-HSPA+, W-CDMA, TD-SCDMA, EDGE and GSM/GPRS MT6592, MT6582 Q1 2014
Helio M70 5G

MT6297[55]

7 nm 5G NR Sub-6 GHz, 5G NR mmWave, LTE Q1 2020

GNSS modules[edit]

Global navigation satellite system (GNSS) modules.

  • MT6628 (GPS) WLAN 802.11b/g/n, WIFI Direct, Bluetooth 4.0 LE, GPS/QZSS, FM
  • MT6620 (GPS)
  • MT3339 (2011) (GPS, QZSS, SBAS)[56]
  • MT3337 (GPS)
  • MT3336 (GPS)
  • MT3333/MT3332 (2013) GPS/GLONASS/GALILEO/BEIDOU/QZSS, is the world's first five-in-one multi-GNSS that supports the Beidou navigation satellite system.[57]
  • MT3329 (GPS)
  • MT3328 (GPS)
  • MT3318 (GPS)

IEEE 802.11[edit]

As a result of the merger with Ralink, MediaTek has added wireless network interface controllers for IEEE 802.11-standards, and SoCs with MIPS CPUs to its product portfolio.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Investor Relations: Corporate Management". MediaTek. Retrieved June 27, 2018.
  2. ^ "Sources: MediaTek About page". MediaTek. June 27, 2018. Retrieved June 27, 2018.
  3. ^ "Sources: Counterpoint Research". MediaTek. December 30, 2017. Retrieved June 27, 2018.
  4. ^ a b c d e f MediaTek (September 19, 2019). "Our Corporate Annual Reports". MediaTek. Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  5. ^ "About MediaTek". MediaTek.
  6. ^ "Worldwide locations". MediaTek. Archived from the original on September 28, 2013. Retrieved September 27, 2013.
  7. ^ "MediaTek 4th largest IC designer worldwide in 2013". May 10, 2013. Archived from the original on August 8, 2014. Retrieved July 31, 2014.
  8. ^ a b c d e Honan, Mat (February 5, 2013). "The Next Global Smartphone Revolution: Made in Taiwan". Wired. Archived from the original on October 3, 2013. Retrieved September 27, 2013.
  9. ^ "MediaTek to improve low-cost Android smartphone performance". Good Gear Guide by PC Australian. Archived from the original on January 3, 2014. Retrieved September 27, 2013.
  10. ^ a b c d "Serial disrupter". The Economist. August 24, 2013. Archived from the original on September 25, 2013. Retrieved September 27, 2013.
  11. ^ "Chinese chipmaking upstarts are preparing to take on Qualcomm and Intel". IT Pro Portal. Archived from the original on October 5, 2013. Retrieved October 3, 2013.
  12. ^ "Mediatek Inc. Annual Report 2004". Morningstar. Archived from the original on June 25, 2016. Retrieved May 16, 2013.
  13. ^ a b "Dial M for MediaTek'". EE Times. June 22, 2012. Archived from the original on May 21, 2014. Retrieved May 16, 2013.
  14. ^ a b "Battling For The Brains Of Cellphones". Forbes. November 6, 2009. Archived from the original on November 12, 2012. Retrieved May 16, 2013.
  15. ^ "MediaTek to focus more on western markets as it targets Qualcomm". Financial Times. February 23, 2014. Archived from the original on October 20, 2016. Retrieved October 19, 2014.
  16. ^ "Mediatek: cheap, super fast processors will change the smartphone market forever". Hot Topics. November 27, 2014. Archived from the original on December 3, 2014. Retrieved November 27, 2014.
  17. ^ "2014 Q2 Financial Results". MediaTek. July 31, 2015. Archived from the original on January 3, 2015. Retrieved January 3, 2015. Alt URL
  18. ^ MediaTek (November 29, 2019). "MediaTek and Intel Partner to Bring 5G Connectivity to the Next…". MediaTek. Retrieved November 29, 2019.
  19. ^ "Intel and MediaTek Partner to Deliver 5G on the PC". Intel Newsroom. Retrieved November 29, 2019.
  20. ^ "Taiwan's top chip house stretches beyond optical storage". EE Times. April 11, 2005. Retrieved October 15, 2007.
  21. ^ "MediaTek buys ADI's cellular chip operations". EETimes. September 10, 2007. Archived from the original on May 21, 2014. Retrieved May 20, 2014.
  22. ^ "MediaTek Completes Purchase of Analog Devices Cellular Radio and Baseband Chipset Divisions".
  23. ^ "MediaTek buys Ralink". EE Times. Archived from the original on October 5, 2013. Retrieved October 3, 2013.
  24. ^ "MediaTek buys baseband DSP IP licensor Coresonic". EE Times. Archived from the original on October 5, 2013. Retrieved October 3, 2013.
  25. ^ "MediaTek to Buy Chip Design Rival MStar for $3.8 Billion". Bloomberg Businessweek. Archived from the original on September 24, 2013. Retrieved October 3, 2013.
  26. ^ "MediaTek raises Q1 sales forecast on merger with MStar". Focus Taiwan. Archived from the original on May 8, 2014. Retrieved May 7, 2014.
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  28. ^ "2013 Q3 Investor Conference Report" (PDF). MediaTek. November 1, 2013. Archived (PDF) from the original on January 13, 2015. Retrieved January 11, 2015.
  29. ^ "2014 Q3 Investor Conference Call & Webcast". MediaTek. November 6, 2014. Archived from the original on January 3, 2015. Retrieved January 3, 2015.
  30. ^ "Overview of our brilliant performance in 2014". MediaTek. March 5, 2015. Archived from the original on March 8, 2015. Retrieved March 8, 2015.
  31. ^ "Broadcom, Mediatek Dial Up LTE". EE Times. February 13, 2014. Archived from the original on May 22, 2014. Retrieved May 22, 2014.
  32. ^ "China's LTE chipmakers to pressure MediaTek: Citi". EE Times. January 8, 2014. Archived from the original on May 22, 2014. Retrieved May 22, 2014.
  33. ^ "Tablet SoC Latecomer MediaTek Creeping up on Samsung". EE Times. Archived from the original on October 4, 2013. Retrieved October 3, 2013.
  34. ^ "MediaTek announces MT8135 big.LITTLE SoC for high-end tablets". Android Community. Archived from the original on October 3, 2013. Retrieved October 3, 2013.
  35. ^ "MT8135 and MT6628 SoCs enable powerful 6" and 7" tablets available for under $150; also power new Fire HD Kids Edition". MediaTek. October 9, 2014. Archived from the original on January 3, 2015. Retrieved January 3, 2015.
  36. ^ "MediaTek GM on future processors and what else to expect from the company". ThinkDigit. Archived from the original on October 3, 2013. Retrieved October 3, 2013.
  37. ^ "MediaTek announce world's first multimode wireless charging solution, charge wirelessly regardless of equipment and standards". phoneArena.com. Archived from the original on April 24, 2014. Retrieved April 24, 2014.
  38. ^ "MediaTek MT3188 Multi-Mode Wireless Charging ASIC Supports Inductive and Resonant Modes". ThomasNet News. Archived from the original on April 24, 2014. Retrieved April 24, 2014.
  39. ^ "MediaTek announces MT6732 64-bit chipset with LTE". GSMArena. Archived from the original on May 4, 2014. Retrieved April 24, 2014.
  40. ^ "Mediatek Announces MT6630, World's First Five-in-One Combo Wireless Connectivity SOC for Mobile Devices". MediaTek. February 25, 2014. Archived from the original on May 12, 2014.
  41. ^ Frumusanu, Andrei. "MediaTek Unveils Helio X20 Tri-Cluster 10-Core SoC". www.anandtech.com. Retrieved April 16, 2020.
  42. ^ Frumusanu, Andrei. "HiSilicon Announces The Kirin 980: First A76, G76 on 7nm". www.anandtech.com. Retrieved April 16, 2020.
  43. ^ "Qualcomm Announces New Flagship Snapdragon 855 Mobile Platform - A New Decade of 5G, AI, and XR". Qualcomm. December 5, 2018. Retrieved April 16, 2020.
  44. ^ "Exynos 9820 Processor: Specs, Features | Samsung Exynos". Samsung Semiconductor. Retrieved April 16, 2020.
  45. ^ "MediaTek Enables the World's First Ultra HD TV Powered by Android TV Software in Collaboration With Google". MediaTek. January 6, 2015. Archived from the original on January 11, 2015. Retrieved January 11, 2015.
  46. ^ "MediaTek SoC Designed for First Sony Android TV". MediaTek. January 7, 2015. Archived from the original on January 14, 2015. Retrieved January 11, 2015.
  47. ^ "MediaTek 5G". MediaTek. Retrieved May 30, 2019.
  48. ^ a b MediaTek (April 15, 2020). "Why MediaTek Stands Behind Our Benchmarking Practices". MediaTek. Retrieved April 16, 2020.
  49. ^ a b Frumusanu, Andrei. "Mobile Benchmark Cheating: When a SoC Vendor Provides It As A Service". www.anandtech.com. Retrieved April 16, 2020.
  50. ^ "Qualcomm responds to MediaTek benchmark cheating controversy". Android Authority. April 14, 2020. Retrieved April 16, 2020.
  51. ^ F, Andrei (April 16, 2020). "Which means that MTK had it enabled by default on their BSP - and Oppo actually didn't know how to properly disable it. Again, this goes against their notion that "vendors have a choice" - when clearly it's backhanded. 2/2". @andreif7. Retrieved April 16, 2020.
  52. ^ "UL Delists MediaTek-Powered Phones with Suspect Benchmark Scores". benchmarks.ul.com. Retrieved April 16, 2020.
  53. ^ "A UMTS modem for IoT solutions that require cellular data connectivity from HSDPA to DC-HSPA+". MediaTek. Archived from the original on April 25, 2017. Retrieved April 24, 2017.
  54. ^ "MediaTek Announces the Availability of Multimode LTE Modem Chipset". MediaTek. January 6, 2014. Archived from the original on May 22, 2014. Retrieved May 22, 2014.
  55. ^ "MediaTek launches its Helio M70 5G modem". MediaTek. November 29, 2019. Retrieved November 29, 2019.
  56. ^ "MediaTek Announces Its Latest GPS Solution Supporting QZSS". MediaTek. June 22, 2011. Archived from the original on January 3, 2015. Retrieved January 3, 2015.
  57. ^ "MediaTek Announces World's 1st 5-in-1 Multi-GNSS Receiver SoC Solutions Supporting Beidou Satellite Navigation System". MediaTek. January 28, 2013. Archived from the original on January 3, 2015. Retrieved January 3, 2015.

External links[edit]