Qualcomm has announced that it is working closely with the Chinese in Guizhou Province with a plan to design and sell Qualcomm based servers. This is similar to the deal AMD made with Sugon, China's HPC giant, just a few months later.
Qualcomm has a Xilinx FPGA-based card or a rack which the company is using to target the Hyper server market. These are servers that are used by Google, Amazon web services, Facebook and Microsoft in the US and by Alibaba.com, China Mobile, Baidu or Tencent in China.
This market has grown from 23 percent of TAM in 2013 to 40 percent of total server market in 2014 and it is expected to continue growing. Qualcomm Server-class SoC with 24 cores is manufactured using FinFET architecture and has been sampled to customers.
A few customers are testing the chips, but things might become more interesting as Qualcomm is expected to release its first 10nm server SoC with even more cores. This would mean higher IPC (instruction per clock) and higher clocks with the same TDP of 14nm FinFET products.
Intel is not planning to announce any 10nmserver solution until second half of 2017 which means that Qualcomm could potentially be the first company to get 10nm. Server market is still a big learning curve for Qualcomm but with people such as senior vice president and general manager Vinay Ravuri and Qualcomm Datacenter Group Anand Chandrasekher it has a fighting chance.
Intel still has a dog in the race, it has just announced 22 core / 44 tread Xeon CPU and the Intel Xeon E5-4600 v4 is avaiable today. This is a tough but expensive competitor in the high end, but we have a feeling that ARM servers might do well in performace per watt game. When the companies like Qualcomm make a customer serverSoC that might be tailored better for the data center and server task, things can only get better.