Google’s preview of the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro during the annual I/O 2022 keynote didn’t reveal many details, but did mention that the second-generation SoC Tensor will power the two upcoming flagships. The ad giant usually kept the important details to itself, but a new report says Google will once again bring in Samsung to mass-produce the next-generation custom silicon.
Google will leverage Samsung’s 4nm technology, the same process that forced Qualcomm to switch to TSMC
As Google returns to Samsung for the second-generation Tensor SoC, DDaily reports that the next silicon will be mass-produced on the Korean giant’s 4nm process. The first-generation Tensor was made using Samsung’s 5nm architecture, so it will be considered something of an upgrade. Mass production is expected to start in June, according to the Korean publication, but there is no mention of the official launch date for the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro.
However, with the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro launching in October 2021, we suspect Google will be looking to release the next flagships alongside their direct predecessors. As for why Samsung could potentially be the sole supplier of second-generation Tensor chipsets, there could be a ton of factors involved. Previously, Qualcomm chose Samsung because an older report mentioned the deal was too good to pass up, while TSMC might have charged a premium.
Samsung may have also granted the same attractive offer to Google, on the condition that the latter does not give any orders to TSMC, but the report does not confirm this. TSMC might also have its hands full, completing massive quantity orders for customers like Apple, and because of that it might not have been able to entertain Google.
Since Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 suffered from overheating and performance issues during mass production on Samsung’s 4nm process, we can’t be confident that the second-gen Tensor will become a worthy competitor to the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 in terms of pure performance.
Much like the Pixel 6a’s Tensor, the new custom silicon might lag behind the competition, but Google might add optimizations in other areas, such as machine learning, imaging, voice recognition, and more. There’s still a ton we don’t know about Google’s second-generation Tensor, but as we get closer to the launch of Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro, we’ll stumble upon more details.
News Source: D Daily