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Wednesday, 15 January 2014 10:45

Qualcomm to have 20nm chips later this year

Written by Fuad Abazovic



Modem followed by SoC

We got confirmation that Qualcomm will have 20nm chips in 2014. We could not get too many details but as one can imagine, Qualcomm is putting a lot of effort into making a more energy efficient modem.

Last time we checked the LTE capable iPhone 5S and C had a Qualcomm MDM9615M Qualcomm chip built on 28nm manufacturing process. Since we are quite sure that iPhone 6 doesn’t have a SoC with LTE support on-die, Qualcomm will most likely end up winning this deal once again. The 20nm is the next step is making modems, chips and SoC more energy efficient and at the same time they need less voltage.

This can result with as much as 30 percent less energy consumption and battery drain, which is definitely a nice improvement on the battery life of any mobile device. We have heard that there is a 20nm SoC in works as well, let us call it a successor of Snapdragon 805, but since we do not know Qualcomm’s naming scheme we can’t call it Snapdragon 900 series just yet. This series will come in a new manufacturing process. We don’t have any timeframe for these chips and devices powering them, but Qualcomm will be one of the first companies to jump the 20nm SoC market.

Snapdragon 805 with Adreno 420 4K capable graphics looks like an impressive chip that will land many design wins in 2014 and the fact that the chip comes with LTE cat 6 capable of 300 Mbps downloads, will definitely help its cause. Let us remind you that Qualcomm said on record that "The Snapdragon 805 processor is sampling now and expected to be available in commercial devices by the first half of 2014". This will be a tough cookie to beat.

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