Samsung has announced that they’ll be shuttering some of their factories in Texas that are responsible for designing its custom CPU cores. That leaves a bit of uncertainty in the air for what’s next with Exynos processors, but maybe it’s not all bad news.
Custom cores are gone, but Exynos is sticking around
To be clear, this does not mean that Samsung is getting out of the CPU market entirely. This particular CPU division that’s being shut down was responsible for designing the Mongoose cores that Samsung used as an alternative to ARM-designed cores like most other manufacturers. Even Qualcomm uses semi-custom ARM Cortex cores for their Snapdragon processors, ditching fully custom cores after the Snapdragon 820/821.
So without custom cores, if Samsung wants to continue utilizing their own Exynos chips, they’ll most likely be using Cortex-A76 or A77 cores for the next batch, with the recently announced Exynos 990 CPU to be the last in-house processor using custom cores. This could be a good or bad thing, depending on how the next couple years go.
Samsung has already used ARM cores in some of their mid-range Exynos processors, so it’s only been the flagship chips that use Mongoose cores. On top of that, it’s pretty rare for the Exynos variants to ever beat out their Snapdragon counterparts; the US models generally win out in performance, battery life, and other features year after year simply because Qualcomm does a better job.
Now that doesn’t necessarily mean that an Exynos processor using the same core architecture as the equivalent Snapdragon will be just as good. The Exynos flavors could still lag behind a bit, or they could edge out the Qualcomm-powered models. It’s too early to tell or really to even speculate much, but at the very least we know Samsung is still going to give Qualcomm some competition, however small. Good news for ARM, though.
via: Android Authority