Published: July 20, 2022
ByteDance is looking into creating its self-designed chips to use in its specialized fields due to the unavailability of suppliers who can meet their requirements. The company will customize the chips to handle workloads for its multiple business areas.
While TikTok is ByteDance’s flagship, its other business areas include video platforms, information, and entertainment apps.
The Beijing-based company will join other tech giants in China to channel their focus on semiconductors as they aim to be more self-sufficient in these advanced technologies.
ByteDance has multiple job postings for semiconductor designer-related roles on its website. However, it doesn’t intend to sell the chips it will be producing to other companies.
The company made it clear that the plan to create its own semiconductor design has two particular themes –– to join companies with an increasing focus on creating chips for specific purposes and the push from the Chinese government to be more powerful in this technology.
Creating their own self-designed chips is the companies’ way of meeting their business requirements instead of buying from other manufacturers who may be unable to deliver what they expect.
Some companies like the popular Chinese search site Baidu and eCommerce giant Alibaba are among those that have released chips they have designed on their own despite not having any background in semiconductors.
However, these companies must still hire chipmakers from foreign companies to manufacture the parts for them. It’s similar to what Apple, the most valuable brand in 2021, does for its iPhones.
Semiconductors are one of the main battlegrounds between the US and China in their ongoing technology war. However, despite China’s 4-year effort in heavy investments in the chip industry, it still lags behind the US and some parts of Asia.
Thus, Beijing is now stepping in on pushing semiconductors, though it still depends on foreign part manufacturers.