Using Exynos on mid-tier smartphones
Samsung will use mostly Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 application processors (AP) on its upcoming Galaxy S23 series smartphones, TheElec has learned.
Sources said the tech giant’s own Exynos platform will likely power mid-tier smartphones instead of flagships.
Samsung had attempted to expand the market share of its Exynos platform by offering them at 5-nanometer (nm) and 4nm nodes.
But the 4nm nodes version so far has a very low yield and its performance and heating issues are not up to standards, the sources said.
Samsung System LSI, the company’s logic designing unit, is planning to manufacture its next Exynos series, likely to be called Exynos 2300, using 5nm nodes because of this problem, they added.
Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 on the other hand is being manufactured using TSMC’s 4nm node, meaning it will have overall better performance compared to the 5nm Exynos 2300.
Samsung MX was forced to choose Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 as the main APs on the S23 series because of this issue, the sources said.
Galaxy S22 used Exynos chips but this caused the infamous Gaming Optimization Service (GOS) issue, where Samsung was found to have intentionally limited the performance of the processor to avoid overheating and other issues.
Another group of sources told TheElec that Samsung may have put little resources into the development of its 4nm node as it was considered a bridge between 5nm and 3nm.
However, customer reception and demand for 4nm were higher than anticipated, they added.
Samsung chip boss Kyung Kye-hyun admitted in September that the company was behind in schedule and yield in 5nm and 4nm nodes compared to rival TSMC.
Samsung System LSI recently reorganized some of its team; SoC devleopment in handled by AP Development Team and Communication Processor Development Team, or CP Development Team.
AP Development Team develops computing and AI chips while CP Development Team develops communication related IPs. CP Team is a split off from AP Development Team as Samsung wants to up its expertise in modem related technologies.
Samsung MX Business is also expected to take a more active role in the development of processors with Samsung System LSI that it plans to use on its smartphone.
Meanwhile, Samsung Foundry, Samsung’s contract chip production unit, is also expected to conduct some overhaul.
The unit went through a business review by Samsung leadership earlier this year, their first since 2017.