Google will take a play out of Apple’s playbook as it reportedly ramps up development of its own processors for use in Chromebooks and Pixel smartphones.
Under the code-name Whitechapel, Samsung is collaborating with Google on the design of the chip. Samsung also supplies chips to Apple.
The website Axios broke the story, citing unnamed sources that say Google recently received its first working version of a processor to go inside 2021 Pixel models. Chips for Chromebooks are likely for a later date, the report said.
“The move could help Google better compete with Apple, which designs its own chips,” reporter Ina Fried wrote. “It would be a blow to Qualcomm, which supplies processors for many current high-end phones, including the Pixel.”
Apple makes its own A-series chips for iPhone and iPad and is expected to equip iMacs and MacBooks with custom ARM-based processors in 2021.
Last summer, Apple spent $1 billion to purchase the smartphone modem business from Intel Corp. This year’s flagship iPhones could be powered by an Apple-built 5G modem.
Axios said Google already makes its own chips for machine learning and image processing for the Pixel smartphones. Google’s growing chip team includes formal Intel and Apple employees.