Technology was "card neck" products often "back pot" eager to a new breakthrough
Domestic mobile phone started "core-off war"
This reporter Lu Zehua
A fingernail-sized chip, so stuck in the neck of China's mobile phone manufacturing. China's mobile phone to a comprehensive high-end, to solve this piece of "core illness" is the only way.
Core technology is controlled by people
Chip, is the "heart" of a mobile phone, is the most core technology in the mobile phone industry chain. As the chip design and manufacturing are mostly done by the same manufacturer, the industrial chain is closed and the technical and capital threshold is higher. Therefore, the industry has formed an oligopolistic pattern, and those who want to make breakthrough later are very difficult.
At present, the global handset chip industry is firmly under the control of several companies such as Qualcomm. Among the handset manufacturers in China, only Huawei, which can self-study chips and basically satisfy its own needs, Due to the late start, China's mobile phone chip industry's lack of core technology and talent have not been fundamentally changed. Data show that in 2017, China's chip design industry employs about 140,000 people, creating revenue of about 300 billion US dollars, the per capita output value of 215,000 US dollars. The handset chip giant Qualcomm contrast, its 30,500 employees in 2016 revenue 22.3 billion US dollars, the per capita output value of 731,000 US dollars. The industry forecast that in 2020 China's chip industry needs 700,000 people, but the current reserve of less than 300,000 talents, the gap is large.
The "side effects" of over-reliance on the chip are obvious. On the one hand, subject to the manufacturer's supply of chips, the domestic high-end handset manufacturers do not have absolute dominance over their cellphone production. On the other hand, in recent years, mobile phone chip prices fluctuate greatly, which brings a lot of pressure on the manufacturing cost of domestic mobile phones. At the same time, overseas chip makers also have the patent advantage. All mobile phone companies that adopt the related technologies should obtain the authorization, which in turn brings the rise of the manufacturing cost of mobile phones in China and weakens the competitiveness of the products.
Due to the quality of imported chips varies greatly, some are still in the experimental stage, the product has not been fully mature to be on the market, Chinese handset manufacturers often have to "back the pot" for these chip companies. For example, the problem of excessive heating of a certain brand of imported chips has affected the sales of many Chinese mobile phone brands. The decline in the recognition of some chip brands, but also the impact of the domestic mobile phone brand image.
Domestic chip initially firm
The face of "lack of core and less nuclear" the domestic mobile phone industry for many years weakness, domestic mobile phone chip manufacturing is trying to get out of the woods, and has achieved zero breakthrough in many areas, entered a stage from scratch, the initial firm.
Huawei is a representative of the domestic mobile phone chip manufacturing. After more than 10 years of research and development, HiSilicon, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Huawei, has successfully developed more than 100 chips with independent intellectual property rights and applied for more than 500 patents. At present, HiSilicon chip has been in the world in terms of design, technology, performance and other aspects, more than half of Huawei's mobile phone using HiSilicon chips, and access to global market recognition.
Xiaomi is the second home-grown handset maker with its own chip. After more than two years of research and development, in February 2016, Xiaomi released its first self-developed chip "Surging S1" under the brand of "Pineapple". Millet has become the fourth mobile phone with independent R & D after Apple, Samsung and Huawei Chip phone manufacturers.
These explorations made the initial success of domestic mobile phone chips. Statistics show that in the first 5 months of 2017, domestic-made smartphones accounted for more than 20% of domestic chips.
To achieve these breakthroughs, inseparable from the Chinese mobile phone manufacturers in the chip R & D investment. "Huawei's R & D investment continues to rise, even beyond many large US companies, just a R & D team with tens of thousands of people standing behind the cell-phone chips," said Yu Chengdong, CEO of Huawei Consumer Business.
Chip manufacturing is a systems engineering that requires the support of the overall technical environment, and in this regard, China is making its mark. Take navigation and positioning technology as an example. At present, Beidou Navigation System has formed a relatively complete preliminary industrial chain, including the upstream chips, card and other ancillary equipment.
China Satellite Navigation System Management Office, Bei Dou satellite navigation system spokesman Ran Cheng said that China's domestic Beidou chip to achieve large-scale applications, technology from 0.35 micron to 28 nm, the lowest single price of only 6 yuan, the overall performance even better than International similar products. At present, the domestic sales of Beidou chip sales exceeded 50 million. At the same time, most of the mainstream mobile phone chips in the world support Beidou. Beidou is becoming the standard of domestic smartphones.
Two major areas or counter-attack
Gradually stabilize the domestic mobile phone chip market, is it possible in the coming years to achieve from "run" to "run" or even "lead"? The late Chinese mobile phone brands are seizing the opportunity to constantly explore and expand this possibility.
One of the opportunities is the arrival of 5G era. For now, the chip technology to become the key to 5G business on schedule, 5G terminal chip research and development to a large extent, is in a lagging state, who took the lead in this area to break through, undoubtedly took the initiative.
"The mobile phone is the first echelon of 5G commercialization and the flagship product for commercial use in 2020. The replacement of mobile phone chips is the biggest bottleneck in 5G technology and chip technology is the key node of 5G commercialization." Vice President, China Institute of Information and Communications Wang Zhiqin said.
It is understood that at present, ZTE and Huawei breakthrough in the 5G chip technology larger. It is reported that Huawei will launch a full-scale 5G network solution for large-scale commercial applications by 2018. By 2019, Huawei will launch 5G-capable chips and smartphones.
The artificial intelligence chip is another big "outlet" facing Chinese mobile phone chip. Artificial intelligence can help break the intellectual bottleneck of smartphones. As the most widely used intelligent platform in people's lives, the in-depth combination of mobile phone and artificial intelligence technology is only a matter of time. Nowadays, the integration of artificial intelligence processors in mobile phone chips has become the key point for differentiating competition in the global handset market in the future. It can be said that anyone who seizes the artificial intelligence will seize the high ground of the development of the smart phone. This also means that China's mobile phone chip ushered in a rare "cornering overtaking" opportunities.
Chinese handset makers are seizing this opportunity. In the "Top Ten Technological Advances in China's Smart Manufacturing" announced at the World Smart Manufacturing Conference held in late 2017, Huawei's unmanned smart phone chip "Kirin 970" topped the list. It is reported that this Huawei first introduced in the world of artificial intelligence mobile phone chips, significantly enhance the mobile phone image recognition, voice interaction, intelligent photography and other capabilities, the global mobile artificial intelligence computing to play a leading role in the development.
Yu Chengdong believes that artificial intelligence has brought subversion to the experience of smartphones. At present, the application of artificial intelligence on mobile phones is still in its infancy, and the follow-up needs the improvement of ecology. Huawei has also opened up the resources and capabilities for developers in terms of artificial intelligence development.
In the face of new opportunities, China has portrayed a clear blueprint for the chip industry at the top-level design level. According to the "Medium and Long-Term Development Goals of China's Chip Industry" set forth in the "Outline of the National Integrated Circuit Industry" promulgated by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, by 2020, the gap between the integrated circuit industry and the international advanced level will gradually narrow. Mobile intelligent terminals, network communications, etc. Key areas of integrated circuit design technology has reached the international advanced level. By 2030, the main links of the IC industry chain have reached the international advanced level, and a number of enterprises have entered the international first tier to achieve leapfrog development.
Today, the "China Chip" of domestic mobile phones is constantly exploring breakthroughs. The larger-scale "core-fire warfare" has already sounded the horn. It can be foreseen that in the next few years, the opportunity brought by 5G commercial and artificial intelligence will seize the key to whether China's mobile chip will hit the counter.