Here’s why Qualcomm phones might get updates before MediaTek devices

Qualcomm Smartphone logo on display

Credit: Robert Triggs / Android Authority
  • A Xiaomi executive has provided insight into MediaTek and Qualcomm’s update philosophies.
  • MediaTek reportedly tackles updates in batches, while Qualcomm updates products in “parallel.”
  • The latter leads to quicker distribution but requires a larger workforce.

Qualcomm may have ended 2020 behind MediaTek in global smartphone chip shipments, but it still bests its rival in one key area: update rollout speed. But why is this? Thanks to a Xiaomi executive, we have a possible answer.

Per a Weibo post published by Xiaomi‘s Li Ming, Qualcomm and MediaTek’s update philosophies couldn’t be more different. According to Ming, both companies receive code from Google in advance to ensure they’re prepared when final versions of Android are released. However, Qualcomm chooses to deliver its updates in “parallel” rather than in “batches” like MediaTek. For Qualcomm, this effectively means that it works on updates for all of its products simultaneously and not in smaller, limited groups.

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