Industry sources in South Korea have indicated that Samsung is preparing a powerful new Exynos processor – its first targeting laptop designs. The Korea Economic Daily says that the new Exynos has the distinction of being the first with an AMD Radeon GPU. It will launch in H2 this year.
Samsung Exynos chips currently power variants of its own smartphones, as well as being adopted by some rival brands like Vivo. They haven't got the best name right now, often seen as an inferior choice to a Qualcomm SoC, but Samsung has been putting efforts in to overturn that perception.
The Exynos 2100 premium 5G mobile SoC was seen as a new hope for Samsung. Launched at CES 2021, it offered >30 per cent better CPU performance than the previous gen. The CPU portion of the SoC is based upon a tri-cluster octa-core CPU with 1x Arm Cortex-X1 (up to 2.9 GHz), 3x Cortex-A78, 4x Cortex-A55 – instead of Samsung custom cores. Meanwhile, the GPU duties are taken care of by the Arm Mali-G78 GPU. In tests, the Exynos 2100 proved a very close challenger to the Qualcomm SD888 (both 5nm chips) but its performance was spoiled somewhat by its thermals – causing throttling.
"The new Exynos will offer improved functions, including extraordinary computing power and battery efficiency, by utilizing a 5-nanometer processing technology," said the Korean source. "It's good for both laptops and smartphones". An important confirmation in this report is that the upcoming laptop-targeting Exynos SoC will at last feature the collaborative work of AMD on the GPU portion of the SoC. Other than saying the new SoC will thus offer "improved graphical technology," there sadly aren't any further details.
Apple has gained plaudits for its home-grown M1 (Arm-based) chips that are now powering its newest Mac computers. Apple's efforts seem to have gained much better momentum than the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx chip for laptops which are sometimes characterised as an inferior choice for Windows laptops, except for in extending battery life. Qualcomm is currently developing a third gen Snapdragon 8cx SoC.