Published: Wed, September 04, 2019
Electronics | By Kelly Massey

Samsung launches 5G integrated Exynos 980 SoC


Rather than being coupled with a separate 5G modem, the 5G-enabled Exynos 980 not only helps reduce power consumption but also increase the space efficiency within a device.

Samsung's aim here is to "make 5G more accessible to a wider range of users", which is simply a thinly veiled way of saying the Exynos 980 will be found inside mid-range phones starting sometime in 2020.

The SoC is constructed through an 8nm process and sports a total of eight CPU cores - two Cortex-A77 and six Cortex-A55 - as well as the Mali G76 GPU.

"With the introduction of our 5G modem previous year, Samsung has been driving in the 5G revolution and paved the way towards the next step in mobility", said Ben Hur, vice president of System LSI marketing at Samsung Electronics.

The 5G modem in particular will support Sub-6-GHz speeds on 5G for up to 2.55-gigabits, E-UTRA-NR Dual connectivity for 3.55Gbps mobile downlink speeds and LTE CAT.16 5CA 4G LTE for up to 1Gbps speeds. It also seems like the chipset lacks support for mmWave 5G spectrum, as used by operators such as Verizon and T-Mobile. For photographers, it can also support up to 108-megapixels camera resolution.

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The neural processing unit (NPU) features elevated performances of up to 2.7 times compared to its predecessor and is built into the Exynos 980 to provide new levels of on-device intelligence.

In terms of imaging, the Exynos 980 can support up to 108MP resolution and up to five individual sensors on a device.

The NPU also adds enhancements to applications such as secure user authentication, content filtering, mixed reality, intelligent camera, and more. Huawei was first with its Kirin 980, already powering the Huawei Mate 20 series.

Further, Exynos 980's multi-format codec will support encoding and decoding of 4K UHD video at 120 frames per second.

Samsung's new SoC (System on Chip) is based on 8mm process tech (rather than the 7nm favoured by some other vendors).

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