World’s First 7nm Processor – Qualcomm Snapdragon 855

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According to leaks, Qualcomm will be announcing the Snapdragon 855 later this year.

What lithography the SoC would be taking advantage of is unclear though. With the Snapdragon 845 being made on the second-generation 10nm FinFET process, there were rumours of the 7nm FinFET node being used for the Snapdragon 855. Now, according to the company’s contractors and a leak, we might very well be seeing the world’s first SoC made on the advanced 7nm node.

Reports from late 2017 say that TSMC has begun building the ‘world’s first’ semiconductor plant that will be able to support the creation of 3nm node silicon chips. However, TSMC has made it clear, according to DigiTimes, that it’ll be staying in Taiwan at the Tainan Science Park to “fully leverage the company’s existing cluster advantage” and see the benefit of a “comprehensive supply chain”.

The firm already operates a 5nm fab in the same location, so it’s not an illogical leap, though TSMC hasn’t started producing 5nm chips yet. Its website saying that these are “scheduled to start risk production in the second quarter of 2019”. Given that it’ll be the ‘first’ 7nm SoC, a tremendous reduction in power draw and increased performance is expected. However, it’s unlikely we’ll be hearing much more until next year.

Also, Qualcomm just unveiled the Snapdragon X24 LTE modem

It is supposedly capable of 2 Gbps downlink speed, will be the first chip to be built on the 7nm FinFET production process.

“As the world’s first announced Gigabit LTE modem to achieve speeds of up to 2 Gbps, the Snapdragon X24 LTE modem sets a major mobile industry milestone, designed to provide enhanced mobile broadband and deliver an extremely important gigabit coverage layer for commercial 5G networks and mobile devices that are expected to start launching in 2019. Further expanding on the use of 4×4 and LAA capability, the Snapdragon X24 packs a powerful array of the most advanced 4G LTE technologies commercially available, helping mobile operators to fully mobilize their spectrum assets and maximize the capacity of their Gigabit LTE networks, and mobile device makers to offer consumers a tangible glimpse of our 5G future.”

Roland Quandt said that even though Qualcomm won’t say it, but the Snapdragon 855 will probably feature the X24 LTE Modem in it.


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