For the past few weeks, we’ve been getting more and more Mate 20 rumors that have suggested that Huawei is about to unveil a phone with 2019-grade specs, or the kind of hardware we expect on the Galaxy S10, OnePlus 7, Pixel 4, and all the other hot Android phone of the near future. Huawei also confirmed that the Mate 20 would be the first Android phone to pack a 7nm processor this year as well, a chip that’s supposed to be faster and more efficient than 10nm chips in current flagships.
The new iPhones that Apple will unveil in mid-September will also come with 7nm chips. We already saw the first benchmarks for the new iPhone X models that suggest the A12 chips will blow away the competition. But Qualcomm would like to remind everyone that it’s also making some of the best chips in the mobile industry, and that it’ll have its own 7nm chips ready for next-gen devices.
Qualcomm practically told us the Galaxy S10 will have a processor as good as the new iPhones — well, at least on paper. The unnamed platform, whose logical name should be Snapdragon 855, will be built on the same 7nm process technology like Apple’s A12 and Huawei’s Kirin 980 processors.
But Qualcomm isn’t sharing any details about it in its press release. The company just wanted to tell the world to know that it’s already sampling 7nm chips for customers:
The 7nm SoC can be paired with the Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ X50 5G modem, which is expected to be the first 5G-capable mobile platform for premium tier smartphones and other mobile devices. Qualcomm Technologies has begun sampling of its upcoming flagship mobile platform to multiple OEMs developing next-generation consumer devices. The upcoming platform will transform industries, encourage new business models and improve the consumer experience as operators come online with 5G services later in 2018 and through 2019.
Furthermore, as you can see above, the 7nm Snapdragon processor will also be compatible with the Snapdragon X50 5G modem, the company said. Actual details about the 7nm platform will be unveiled in the fourth quarter of the year.
Samsung, which is likely working on its own 7nm Exynos chip, is almost certainly among Qualcomm’s customers. For years, Samsung has been using both Exynos and Qualcomm chips in its Galaxy S and Note flagships, and there are no signs things will change next year.
Even if something crazy happens and Samsung ends up using only Exynos chips in its phones at some point, it’s likely that the S10 and other 2019 Android flagships will still make use of Qualcomm’s 7nm processor. As for 5G support, Samsung already told the world the Galaxy S10 won’t be its first 5G smartphone.