Rumor: the Snapdragon 895 will be fabbed on 4nm Samsung node, the 895+ on 4nm TSMC node

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Snapdragon 865 was fabbed on TSMC’s N7P process (second generation 7 nm), but Qualcomm switched to Samsung foundries when they ordered Snapdragon 888. Snapdragon 888+ is built on the same Samsung 5 nm node, it’s just a taller built-in part with the Cortex-X1 clocked at 2,995 GHz (up from 2.84 GHz), and the NPU screwed up to 32 TOPS (up from 26 TOPS).

Things will look different next year, he says Isunivers – The Snapdragon 895 will be fabbed by Samsung at its 4 nm hub, while the Snapdragon 895+ upgrade will be made at TSMC’s 4 nm foundries instead.

Both are improvements to the respective 5 nm nodes at the foundries, but the performance benefits and potential power savings of the new processes have not yet been publicly announced.

Chances are that Snapdragon 895 and 895+ will follow a similar schedule as the two 888 versions this year – the vanilla version will be launched in December / January, Plus will come six months later. If nothing else, semiconductor deficiencies will (hopefully) be cleared up by then.

Qualcomm’s choice of foundry last year may have been limited by the fact that Apple bought a large share of TSMC’s 5 nm supply for both its Apple A14 and M1 chipsets. Next year, however, the company will reportedly split orders and get 4 nm A15 chips for iPhones and 3 nm chips for iPads. Somehow there is sufficient production capacity available at TSMC’s foundries that even MediaTek ordered 4 nm chipsets (in fact, these may be the first 4 nm chips to hit the market, but they will be expensive).

Samsung is expected to use its own 4 nm foundry to make the Exynos 2200, which should be the first chip with an AMD RDNA 2 GPU. Qualcomm chose Samsung’s 4 nm foundry for its X65 and X62 5G modems, so it’s only natural that the Snapdragon 895 (which has an integrated X65) uses the same process.


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