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Intel to start building ARM-based smartphone chips for LG smartphones next year


Intel has entered into a new licensing agreement with competitor ARM to produce ARM-based chips in Intel factories. The deal, announced today at the Intel Developer Forum, is a strategic move from the Santa Clara, CA company to offer its large-scale custom chip manufacturing facilities, which include 10-nanometer production lines, to third-parties, including those using its rival's technology. Intel's new foundry licensing agreements also include deals to produce chips for LG Electronics, Netronome, and Spreadrum.

Intel and ARM are often perceived as being rivals. Intel's x86 chip architecture dominates the PC sector while ARM-based chips are used in most phones and tablets.

Intel first began making processors for other semiconductor manufacturers just over three years ago.
Its output included computer chips produced for a firm called Altera that incorporated some of ARM's technologies - Intel went on to acquire Altera last year.
But the latest development marks a deeper relationship between Intel and ARM.
The Californian firm said customers would be able to combine its ability to make 10-nanometre transistors - which promise performance gains over the existing 14nm tech currently used in high-end phone processors - and ARM's most advanced designs.
ARM does not make physical products itself but instead licences its inventions to others, who then customise the designs.
The partnership poses a challenge to Samsung, GlobalFoundries and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), which currently manufacture most of the world's ARM-based processors.