As the adoption rate of 5G ramps up, both Samsung and MediaTek are hoping to supply Huawei with 5G chipsets for low and mid-range smartphones, according to a recent Digitimes report citing industry sources.
Huawei apparently wants to reduce its dependency on Qualcomm for 5G modems, and Samsung is seemingly viewing the Chinese OEM as a potential client for its 5G solutions. Huawei’s fully-owned chipmaker HiSilicon has two 5G modems on its product catalog, including the Balong 5G01 introduced in 2018, and the Balong 5000. The latter was unveiled last year and it’s primarily designed for the high-end smartphone segment.
Similarly, Samsung’s 5G modem lineup presently consists of two stand-alone products, namely the Exynos Modem 5100 and Exynos Modem 5123. The former has been employed by high-end solutions including the Exynos 9820 and 9825, while the latter was paired with the Exynos 990 – also a high-end SoC. Unless Samsung plans to release new 5G modems in the future, Huawei would presumably have to use one of these existing solutions for its low and mid-range phones.
If the report turns out to be correct and Huawei is looking for 5G modems outside of its existing supply chain, it remains to be seen if the company will partner with Samsung, MediaTek, or both. We’ll keep you posted if the story develops further.