Feeds

Qualcomm runs out of chips as punters wolf down SnapDragons

Can't make 'em fast enough for smartphone boom

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Qualcomm can't make its Snapdragon chips fast enough, forcing some companies to consider alternatives while waiting for supplies of the 28nm powerhouse.

Responding to question during a conference call on earnings, archived by Seeking Alpha, Qualcomm reps admitted they'd failed to gear up production fast enough and were now working with some customers to use older Qualcomm chips. They also conceded that some companies would end up going elsewhere for their chips.

It's an enviable position, though analysts may argue the company should have more accurately predicted the popularity of its Snapdragon line and ramped up production to suit. It's the growth in LTE handsets which is particularly putting pressure on companies as there aren't a lot of alternatives available.

The Snapdragon S4 is the current flagship chip from Qualcomm, found in the Asus Transform, the HTC One XL, and touted as being in the heart of the iPhone 5. The S4 provides (at least) a couple of ARM processor cores and a multi-format radio stack, including LTE, along with some other odds and ends, all manufactured with incredibly small gates (28nm) which leads to lower power consumption and, in turn, less heat generation.

The Snapdragon is certainly the ARM implementation of choice in Android smartphones, and the growth of smartphones is well recorded, but Qualcomm is also bracing itself for the onslaught of orders from companies wanting to create Windows on ARM products which will place similar, if not greater, demands on the silicon.

The shortage of parts might see a few designs changed, and provide a foot in the door to the competition, but Qualcomm is still the leader of the ARM pack and will remain so for the foreseeable future. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Nice computers don’t need to go to the toilet, says Barclays
Bad computers might ask if you are Sarah Connor
4K video on terrestrial TV? Not if the WRC shares frequencies to mobiles
Have your say with Ofcom now, before Freeview becomes Feeview
YES, iPhones ARE getting slower with each new release of iOS
Old hardware doesn't get any faster with new software
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
You didn't get the MeMO? Asus Pad 7 Android tab is ... not bad
Really, er, stands out among cheapie 7-inchers
Apple winks at parents: C'mon, get your kid a tweaked Macbook Pro
Cheapest models given new processors, more RAM
VMware builds product executables on 50 Mac Minis
And goes to the Genius Bar for support
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
Microsoft stands on shore as tablet-laden boat sails away
Brit buyers still not falling for Windows' charms
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.