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Why Tesla, Apple, Google and Facebook are designing their own chips

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Google CEO Sundar Pichai talks about the company’s third-generation artificial intelligence chips.

Source: YouTube screenshot

Not content with relying on standard chips that are in high demand, some of the world’s biggest tech firms are developing their own semiconductors.

Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Tesla and Baidu are all shunning established chip firms and bringing certain aspects of chip development in-house, according to company announcements and media reports.

“Increasingly, these companies want custom-made chips fitting their applications’ specific requirements rather than use the same generic chips as their competitors,” Syed Alam, global semiconductor lead at Accenture, told CNBC.

“This gives them more control over the integration of software and hardware while differentiating them from their competition,” Alam added.

Russ Shaw, a former non-executive director at U.K.-based Dialog Semiconductor, told CNBC that custom-designed chips can perform better…

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