Microsoft reportedly working on a chip for its Surface devices

Microsoft could work on its own chips for future Surface devices, suggests a job posting on LinkedIn. Originally spotted by HotHardware, he reveals that the company is looking for a Director of SoC Architecture.
While the LinkedIn post in no way proves that Microsoft is working on a custom chip, its appearance roughly coincides with a rumor on Microsoft and AMD collaboration on an Arm processor for laptops (via FrontTron). Apparently, this will lead to better graphics performance than Qualcomm silicon made on older architecture. According to this report, the chip will use last year’s Cortex-X1 core and mRDNA 2 GPU, and it will feature an Exynos modem for 5G connectivity.

Next generation Surface devices can display a homemade 5nm chip

Here’s what the job posting says:

Bloomberg said in December 2020 that Microsoft is working on internal chip designs for the server computers that run its cloud service and is also exploring a chip to power some of its Surface computers. At that time, the chip design unit reported to the Azure cloud business leader, not Surface boss Panos Panay.
Microsoft has apparently also hired processor engineers from Intel, AMD, Nvidia and Qualcomm.

The Surface Pro X announced in October 2019 is powered by a custom chip known as the Microsoft SQ1 that the company jointly developed with Qualcomm.

An internal chip will help Microsoft reduce its dependence on third-party vendors and also give it better control over performance and costs.

This is something some of his industry peers are already doing. Apple is very likely to announce its second generation Arm chip tomorrow for new Macs and maybe next year’s iPad Pros. Google has also made a internal chip for its Flagship smartphones 2021.

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