UNISOC (Chinese: 紫光展锐; pinyin: Zǐguāng zhǎn ruì), formerly Spreadtrum Communications, Inc. (Chinese: 展讯通信有限公司; pinyin: Zhǎnxùn Tōngxìn Yǒuxiàn Gōngsī), is a Chinese fabless semiconductor company headquartered in Shanghai which produces chipsets for mobile phones. UNISOC develops its business in two major fields - consumer electronics and industrial electronics. This includes smartphones, feature phones, smart audio systems, smart wear and other application fields. Industrial electronics cover the fields such as LAN IoT, WAN IoT and smart display. [citation needed]

Native name
FoundedApril 2001
Number of employees

From 2021, it has been the fourth largest mobile processor manufacturer in the world, after MediaTek, Qualcomm and Apple, with 9% of global market share. [1]



In 2021, Tsinghua Unigroup, UNISOC's former parent company, was on the verge of bankruptcy. After a year-long restructuring, a private equity consortium headed by Chinese government-backed Wise Road Capital took over in 2022 and now controls the company.[2][3] In addition to Wise Road, the company’s shareholders include the China Integrated Circuit Industry Investment Fund, a Chinese government-backed investment fund for chips, which has a 13% stake in the company.[4]

Research and development


UNISOC products support a broad range of wireless communications standards, including GSM, GPRS, EDGE, TD-SCDMA, W-CDMA, HSPA+ and TD-LTE. UNISOC has a global R & D layout, with more than 5,000 employees worldwide, 90% of whom are R&D personnel.

The company originally produced chips for GSM handsets, but most of its resources in the late 2000s were then focused on the Chinese TD-SCDMA 3G standard. In addition to GSM and combined GSM/TD-SCDMA baseband chipsets, Spreadtrum also supplies chips for two Chinese mobile TV standards: TD-MBMS and CMMB. Spreadtrum's customers accounted for 50% of TD-SCDMA handset sales in China Mobile's current round of TD-SCDMA trials.[5]

UNISOC, then still known as Spreadtrum, was formerly a public company listed on NASDAQ, but agreed to an acquisition by Tsinghua Holdings subsidiary Tsinghua Unigroup, in July 2013, for about US$1.78 billion;[6] the deal completed on 23 December 2013.[7]

In 2014, Tsinghua Unigroup acquired RDA Microelectronics for US$907 Million.[8] RDA Microelectronics was a fabless semiconductor company that designs, develops and markets wireless system-on-chip and radio-frequency semiconductors for cellular, connectivity and broadcast applications.

In 2018, the company Spreadtrum Communications and RDA Microelectronics was merged and rebranded to UNISOC, in which Intel agreed to invest $1.5 billion for a 20 percent stake. The company also began working on a 5G smartphone platform with an Intel 5G modem.[9][10] In February 2018, Spreadtrum was introducing high-end smartphones with augmented reality.[11]

UNISOC released 5G technology platform Makalu 1.0 and 5G baseband chip V510 in February 2019, then, a year later, launched T7520, a 5G SoC initiating the use of 6nm EUV advanced process technology.[12]

In 2021, it beat HiSilicon and ranked third in the Chinese smartphone AP market share.[13]

Main products


Currently, UNISOC’s main products include mobile communication central processing units, baseband chips, AI chips, radio frequency front-end chips, radio frequency chips and other communication, computing and control chips, which are widely used in consumer electronics fields such as smart phones, smart tablets, and smart wearables, finance, smart logistics, smart power, smart medical and other industries.

See also



  1. ^ "China's Tsinghua Unigroup axes major memory chip projects".
  2. ^ Wu, Kane; Horwitz, Josh; Liu, Roxanne (2023-02-14). "Exclusive: Chinese chip designer Unisoc seeks to raise $1.5 bln in private funding -sources". Reuters. Retrieved 2023-10-15.
  3. ^ "Tsinghua Unigroup names new chairman for its mobile chip design subsidiary". South China Morning Post. 2023-06-27. Retrieved 2023-10-15.
  4. ^ "UPDATE 1-China's chip conglomerate Unigroup gets state-backed investors, Alibaba out of deal". Reuters. 2021-12-10. Retrieved 2023-10-15.
  5. ^ Spreadtrum Communications, Inc. Announces First Quarter 2008 Results (FindArticles via PR Newswire), 15 May 2008, retrieved 26 June 2008
  6. ^ Chaudhuri, Saabira (12 July 2013). "Spreadtrum Communications Agrees to $1.78 Billion Takeover". Wall Street Journal. wsj.com. Retrieved 2014-01-11.
  7. ^ "Tsinghua Unigroup Completes Acquisition of Spreadtrum for US$31.00 per ADS". www.broadwayworld.com. Archived from the original on 2014-01-11. Retrieved 2014-01-11.
  8. ^ Inc, RDA Microelectronics (2014-07-18). "Tsinghua Unigroup Closes US$907 Million Acquisition of RDA Microelectronics for US$18.50 Per ADS". GlobeNewswire News Room (Press release). Retrieved 2019-05-04. {{cite press release}}: |last= has generic name (help)
  9. ^ "Spreadtrum and RDA join Intel on 5G". 23 February 2018.
  10. ^ "Spreadtrum rebrands itself to Unisoc; to launch two new chipsets for low-cost phones - ET Telecom".
  11. ^ Hindustan Times
  12. ^ "5G module with China-made chip to be mass-produced in Q4". cntechpost.com. cnTechPost. 29 June 2020. Retrieved 13 November 2020.
  13. ^ "Unisoc growing smartphone application processor market share in China".