Samsung, the Korean tech giant, prepares to advance in the foundry business with the launch of its long-awaited 3nm and 4nm processes. Samsung plans to exhibit the benefits of its SF3 and SF4X processes at the VLSI Symposium 2023 in June. New company offerings may challenge TSMC, the current foundry industry leader.
Samsung’s SF3 Process: Enhancing Performance with Cutting-Edge Technology
Samsung’s SF3 process will use 3nm GAP tech with Multi-Bridge-Channel Field-Effect Transistors (MBCFETs), according to reports. Samsung expects SF3 to perform better with the Gate-All-Around transistor design.
No comparison to the initial 3nm generation is given, but any technological progress is significant.
SF4X: Samsung’s Fourth-Generation 4nm Process
Samsung will unveil SF4X, its fourth-gen 4nm process, alongside SF3. This new product touts a 10% surge in performance and an impressive 23% boost in power efficiency when compared to Samsung’s SF4, which is their 4nm process of the second generation. SF4X competes with TSMC’s N4P.
Qualcomm and MediaTek will use the 4nm process for another year, despite expectations. This is evident from their plans for the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 and Dimensity 9300.
The Superiority of SF3: Faster and More Efficient
When it comes to the 3nm technology, the SF3 process promises to be 22% faster than its SF4 counterpart. Moreover, operating at the same power limit, SF3 demonstrates a commendable 34% increase in efficiency when running at the same frequency and transistor count. Additionally, there is a notable 21% reduction in the logic area.
While the list of clients interested in this new technology is currently unknown, rumors suggest that Qualcomm may source chips from both TSMC and Samsung. Samsung’s prowess and capacity make it an attractive partner for several companies, especially considering TSMC’s reported commitment to producing Apple’s A17 and M3 series chips.
Collaborations with AMD, Google, and Qualcomm
Samsung and AMD’s partnership on 4nm chip development has been gaining attention. As June approaches, further details on the collaboration are anticipated. Samsung may return to the flagship smartphone chipset market, but rumors persist. Uncertainty looms over the Exynos 2400’s fate as Samsung’s 3nm process holds promise for their upcoming chipsets.
Additionally, Google is expected to remain a robust partner for Samsung, particularly in the Tensor series. The ongoing collaboration between these two tech giants showcases their commitment to pushing the boundaries of innovation and delivering cutting-edge products to consumers.
Qualcomm’s Dual-Source Strategy: Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 for Galaxy
Qualcomm may dual-source Snapdragon chips from TSMC and Samsung, according to insiders. Samsung’s impressive wafer output has caught Qualcomm’s attention, influencing their decision.
Rumor has it that Qualcomm will use their own custom designs instead of ARM CPU designs for the Snapdragon 8 Gen 4. This may include a 2+6 CPU configuration with two performance cores and six energy-efficient cores. Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 set to outrun Apple’s M2 with TSMC’s N3E process and LPDDR6 support.
Qualcomm needs just two cores for unmatched single-core power and better multi-core results. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 won’t arrive for another year, and Qualcomm’s strategy may evolve in the interim.
Qualcomm and Samsung work together to make better Snapdragon 8 chips. If all goes well, this collaboration may produce outcomes at the outset.