Tech moves fast! Stay ahead of the curve with Techopedia!
Join nearly 200,000 subscribers who receive actionable tech insights from Techopedia.
A system on a chip (SoC) combines the required electronic circuits of various computer components onto a single, integrated chip (IC). SoC is a complete electronic substrate system that may contain analog, digital, mixed-signal or radio frequency functions. Its components usually include a graphical processing unit (GPU), a central processing unit (CPU) that may be multi-core, and system memory (RAM).
Because SOC includes both the hardware and software, it uses less power, has better performance, requires less space and is more reliable than multi-chip systems. Most system-on-chips today come inside mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.
An SoC is specially designed to meet the standards of incorporating the required electronic circuits of numerous computer components onto a single integrated chip. Instead of a system that assembles several chips and components onto a circuit board, the SoC fabricates all necessary circuits into one unit.
The challenges of an SoC include higher prototyping and architecture costs, more complex debugging and lower IC yields. IC is not cost effective and takes time to manufacture. However, this is likely to change as the technology continues to be developed and employed.
An SoC usually contains various components such as: