Thursday , 27 October 2016
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Samsung Begins Building 10-Nanometer System-on-Chip

The latest processor technology from Samsung promises double-digit improvements in performance or power consumption, the company announced today. Samsung claimed it has achieved an industry first by starting mass production of system-on-chip products with a 10-nanometer processing technology.

Compared to Samsung’s 14-nanometer processors, the new technology uses an advanced 3D transistor structure that could boost performance by 27 percent or reduce power consumption by 40 percent, the company said. The new system-on-chip uses a technology called FinFET (fin field effect transistor) that helps minimize the typical performance-versus-power tradeoff in processor manufacturing.

Samsung said the first digital devices to feature the new system-on-chip will arrive on the market early next year and will become more widely available throughout 2017. Products likely to feature the technology include the next version of Samsung’s flagship phone, the Galaxy S8.

Manufacture Requires ‘Cutting-Edge’ Techniques

By being the first to mass produce 10-nanometer FinFET technology, Samsung demonstrated its “leadership in advanced process technology,” executive vice president Jong Shik Yoon said in a statement today. “We will continue our efforts to innovate scaling technologies and provide differentiated total solutions to our customers.”

First conceived through research funded by DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) in the 1990s, FinFET technology uses a gate-like structure for transistors that reduces current leakage, enabling lower-voltage operations. Samsung said it manufactured the new system-on-chip using cutting-edge techniques that helped overcome scaling limitations.

Samsung claimed another first in early 2015, when it announced mass production of the first mobile application processor using 14-nanometer FinFET technology (Exynos 7 Dual 7270, pictured above). At the time, executive vice president Gabsoo Han said the new processors would help enable “further performance improvements for cutting-edge smartphones.”

Deal with Qualcomm

According to a report earlier this month in Korea’s etnews, Samsung has signed on to become the exclusive producer of…