According to the China Times, Taiwanese manufacturer HTC has signed an agreement with ST-Ericsson to jointly develop a series of low-cost chips to power a line of smartphones. Though nothing has been confirmed by either company as yet, the agreement would make HTC less reliant on both Qualcomm and Nvidia, and allow them to alter the design in small but significant ways to suit their unique products.
This method has been utilized to great effect from Apple and Samsung, who have altered existing Cortex-A9 designs just enough to effectively marry the hardware and software. As a result, they have been met with huge performance and battery success. HTC’s latest hero phone, the One X, utilizes both Nvidia and Qualcomm depending on the region — us North Americans get the latter due to LTE support — but we’re betting HTC would prefer to avoid such a mess in the first place.