Samsung recently started shipments of its first-generation 3nm GAA chips, but unfortunately, no smartphone vendors have been reported to show interest in this architecture, instead sticking with TSMC for future orders. However, in 2024, things may take a turn for the best, as the significantly improved second-generation 3nm GAA process may bring in more lucrative mobile clients.
Qualcomm Said to Be One of the First Smartphone Vendors Showing Interest in Samsung’s 3nm GAA Process
Samsung’s first batch of 3nm GAA chips will be for cryptocurrency mining hardware, as no current information mentions the Korean manufacturer’s involvement in the development of smartphone SoCs. This also means that Samsung will no longer be working on its Exynos 2300, which was meant for various Galaxy S23 variants, with a new agreement with Qualcomm stating that the aforementioned series will only launch with Snapdragon chipsets.
Naturally, not getting clients is a setback for Samsung, and given that its 4nm process was rife with problems, such as poor yields, it is not surprising that many smartphone customers have decided to give orders to TSMC, including Qualcomm. Thankfully, all is not lost. According to Sravan Kundojjala’s tweet, even if customers are not showing interest in Samsung’s 3nm GAA process, the company’s second-generation process should bring them back on board.
After all, Samsung claims that its second-generation 3nm GAA architecture brings massive improvements compared to the first iteration, such as reducing power consumption by up to 50 percent, increasing performance by 30 percent, and reducing area by 35 percent. All these improvements are compared with Samsung’s 5nm process, so while the Korean giant did not provide statistical differences between its 4nm node, 3nm GAA still provides some uplift in various categories.
Qualcomm may rekindle a partnership with Samsung for 3nm GAA chips, but on the condition that TSMC runs into yield problems with its own 3nm process. This may be why Qualcomm is rumored to have requested its former chip supplier to produce samples on demand to evaluate if this architecture is worthy of giving orders again. So far, Samsung is providing chip shipments in limited quantities, so there need to be some yield gains before Qualcomm can trust its former partner again.
News Source: Sravan Kundojjala