Samsung has confirmed that it will be manufacturing the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chips, replacing the 810 chips which suffered backlash due to claims of overheating. The updated chip boasts double the performance, adding better battery life to the unit and offering superior graphics and gaming. It is expected to power most new Android phones, tablets, and computers during the first half of 2016 at least.
Samsung is likely to pocket at least $1 billion for this partnership, and continues to develop its 14nm Exynos chips, but Snapdragons are already appearing in Galaxy devices. Samsung is best known for its highly competitive range of smartphones, but its strength lies with chip production, and with companies like Apple consistently gaining more ground, Samsung is looking for other avenues of profit. Despite the rivalry, it has quietly been producing chips for Apple for years, and some Android users are surprised that it would use Snapdragon in new devices when Exynos is such a high-quality system.
This comes at a financially strategic time for both companies, with Samsung’s smartphone profits having flagged lately, and the Snapdragon 810 denting Qualcomm’s reputation. The fact that manufacture has been moved to Samsung suggests that TSMC, previous producer of the chips, was to blame for the overheating issue; either way, teaming up with the South Korean powerhouse will mean a fresh start.