Article is not 100% correct. What it means is that next to Nvidia, Qualcomm, AMD and Apple, Broadcom is the next (mobile) SoC maker in line taking an *architecture* license, allowing itself to design its own CPU (architecture, pipeline etc) using the ARM ISA.
Makes you wonder why Samsung doesn't do this. Just throwing more vanilla ARM cores into a SoC won't give you a competitive edge in the end.. (vanilla is still your own P&R, but nothing else)
Sure taking an ARM architecture let's you design your own CPU...but it takes money and time to do that...just throwing ARM cores into your own SoC is presumably faster...Samsung seems to be doing just fine with that approach
However, it looks like using off-the-shelf cores is increasingly non-differentiating.
It is true you can get to market quicker if you use ARM core, ARM POP, but only at the same pace as the competition.
ARM's cpu designs sometimes get too much credit for the success of ARM ISA in the mobile space. Truth is that the most succesful ARM CPU in the mobile space right now is a custom designed one from Qualcomm.
Most semi companies have realized this which is why there seems to be a beeline to license the architecture. AppliedMicro seems to have been the first one to wisen up to this, then there is Cavium, AMD, now Broadcom and I am sure others will follow.
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