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Samsung to Reportedly Skip the 4nm Process; Will Make a Jump Directly From 5nm to 3nm

By Omar Sohail  / 

Samsung will reportedly kick off mass production of 5nm chips from August, with the first silicon expected to be the new Exynos 992 that will most likely be found in the Galaxy Note 20 family. Side by side, TSMC has remained highly competitive, securing orders from the likes of Apple, with its own production said to have started, with a total of three 5nm technologies on standby. However, unlike TSMC, Samsung isn’t going to be investing resources in the 4nm node; according to sources close to this information, the Korean giant will skip this technology, making a direct leap instead.

Samsung Rumored to Have Invested $8.1 Billion in a Brand New 5nm Production Line

A new report from DigiTimes published behind a paywall says Samsung will skip the 4nm process, making a direct jump to 3nm instead. That’s the complete opposite of what TSMC is planning, and with its 4nm N4 process expected to be complete by 2023, it will give the Taiwanese firm’s partners ample options to choose from. TSMC has also reportedly secured a $20 billion investment for its 3nm chip production facility, with a report stating that it should be operational by 2022.

Galaxy Note 20 Ultra’s Exynos 990 Benchmark Leaks, No Major Improvements in Performance

Though Samsung is the only manufacturer that can keep up with TSMC in terms of technology, it continues to lag behind in terms of progression. TSMC has already secured orders from the likes of Apple, Qualcomm, and Huawei, though Samsung has appeared to have made some form of ground. It was recently reported that Samsung has been given some orders to mass produce 5nm chips for Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X60 5G modem. Some orders will reportedly be given to TSMC too in order to minimize risk, gain better pricing leverage, and complete shipments in a given timeframe.

We expect Samsung to maintain its 5nm production throughout 2021, which is the year when the company is rumored to release the Exynos 1000. While jumping straight to 3nm tech will mean Samsung will be able to direct more resources in an improved and efficient node, it also means the company may lose out on tons of orders from potential partners, who now probably view TSMC as a better option thanks to its upcoming 4nm technology.

If there are any changes to Samsung’s chip development roadmap, we’ll update you accordingly, so stay tuned.

Source: DigiTimes

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