Oppo shutters chip unit
Oppo cited poor market conditions for the closure, blaming “uncertainties in the global economy and the smartphone industry.”
Zeku was set up in 2019 and designed the MariSilicon X neural processor unit (NPU) made on TSMC’s 6nm process which is said to process Oppo’s noise reduction algorithm 20x faster while using half the power of a Snapdragon 888 powered smartphone. Zeku was working on a 4nm version of the chip integratrd with an application processor due out in 2024.
Zeku also designed an image processing unit (ISP) and a PMIC.
Although Oppo has the same owner, BBK, as rival brand Vivo, the two brands use separate supply chains.
Oppo has a 6.4% world smartphone market share, Vivo has 5.1%, domestic rival Xiaomi has 12% while Samsung and Apple together have 56%.
In 2022, worldwide smartphone shipments fell 14%, to under 300 million units – the first time it has been that low for ten years. In Q1 unit shipments were 67 million down 11% y-o-y.
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