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AMD and Mediatek Could Be Negotiating a Joint Venture

Mediatek 5G SoC
(Image credit: MediaTek)

DigiTimes reports that AMD and Mediatek may be in talks to establish a Joint Venture (JV). According to the publication, the JV would be focused on SoC-level data transmission technologies, such as 5G, Wi-Fi and even wired data transmission controllers. Should the joint venture materialize, we would be looking at Mediatek IP being integrated into AMD SoCs - with the focus apparently being placed on mobility hardware solutions such as laptops.

Sources close to DigiTimes reportedly point towards a 2024 market availability for any SoC designs that result from this joint venture. Lending credence to this report is the fact that both AMD and Mediatek have collaborated in the past: AMD integrated Mediatek's Wi-Fi 6 technology into their AMD RZ608 chip, which debuted in the AYANEO handheld games console. While the module is AMD-branded, it is in fact a rebranded version of Mediatek's MT7921K wireless communications module.

According to DigiTimes, AMD is looking to make its notebook solutions more attractive by integrating data transmission technologies; the Taiwanese Mediatek, which has become one of the foremost mobile SoC developers and which holds a rich 5G portfolio, seems like a natural alternative to Intel-developed solutions - competition between AMD and Intel is fierce enough that it's only natural that the Red Team wouldn't want to improve Intel's bottom-line by adopting the company's solutions.

Another interesting element to point out is that AMD's acquisition of Xilinx also opens up the door for IP collaborations in the wired and wireless high-speed data transmission technology world; perhaps the joint venture would see AMD and Mediatek leverage IP from both parties. DigiTimes' sources do seem to think that the joint venture between both companies would also be looking to sell their developed SoC solutions to third parties, instead of limiting its results to in-house products. However, Mediatek is one of the foremost providers of mobile SoCs (it surpassed Qualcomm in shipments for the global chipset market in 2020), and has a much deeper understanding of Wi-Fi 6 and related chip integration designs, as well as data on the manufacturing and supply infrastructure for these technologies. AMD would be able to cut out Intel-made data communications solutions, and MediaTek would increase its foothold in the notebook segment - an apparent win-win for both companies.

AMD has in the meantime responded to the DigiTimes report, saying it does not comment on market speculation; MediaTek, on the other hand, overtly denied the report - both standard responses when it comes to industry insider leaks.