The rules are changing for the semiconductor industry and traditional vendors had better find ways to be more competitive or they will find themselves missing out on some of the most exciting, high-growth markets.
System OEMs in the hottest areas of technology are hiring their own chip designers in droves. It used to be a leverage play for these companies but the evolution is relentless: OEMs are now gearing up to produce their own chips.
The stakes are high and game-changing dynamics are in play. In a bygone era, chip companies used to control the feature definitions of the devices they produced. Now it is consumer mobility OEMs and box vendors that play a bigger role in calling the shots. Companies like Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, Google, Facebook, and others are increasing their leverage in this game by hiring teams of SoC design experts to shape the next category-defining device like the iPhone, iPad, Xbox, or Google Glasses. Even companies such as Lenovo are hiring semiconductor staff to raise their game against the smartphone competition.
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