Samsung not only flexes its muscles in the global smartphone arena, it is a chipmaking powerhouse in the same segment as well. That’s why the Galaxy S8/S8 + were the only phones around with Snapdragon 835 for quite a while in 2017. Samsung helped Qualcomm make it’s cream of the crop chips this year and is likely to continue doing the same for the Snapdragon 845. However, the stars are aligning in a bad way for 2018 as far as Samsung is concerned.
A new report states that Qualcomm might ditch the Seoul-based OEM in favour of TSMC. Nikkei Aisa reports that Qualcomm is ready to hand in a big order of Snapdragon 855 chips to the Taiwanese semiconductor maker.Apart from that, Qualcomm modem chips will also be produced by TSMC in late 2018.
The Snapdragon 855 is expected to be a 7nm chip. And not only Snapdragon chips, but even Apple’s next-gen chips will be produced by TSMC as well next year. This is probably because TSMC is better placed to manufacture 7nm chips compared to Samsung.
This would definitely be a big deal for Samsung, as the Snapdragon 855 chip will be the flagship chip for most high-end phones. And if Samsung loses this contract, it will have to make up for it in some other way.
Some more bad news for Samsung is brewing in the future. As competition from Chinese smartphone makers like Huawei and OnePlus heats up, Samsung’s global market share and profits might get a beating in 2018. This is signalled by the rise of Xiaomi in India.
All in all, Samsung needs to start working on its 2018 business strategy to tackle competition as things heat up more than ever.