Samsung has unveiled the Exynos 2200, a new mobile CPU developed in-house for smartphones. It’s the first mobile system-on-a-chip to have an AMD RDNA 2 graphics architecture GPU, allowing features like hardware-accelerated ray tracing to be implemented.
The partnership with AMD has been in the works for a long time. The two firms first announced a licencing agreement in 2019, and AMD confirmed last year that RDNA 2 would be used in Samsung’s “next flagship mobile SoC.” Samsung had previously teased an introduction event for the Exynos 2200 for January 11th, but it was inexplicably rescheduled.
Samsung’s 4nm EUV technology is used to make the Exynos 2200. Samsung calls this GPU “Xclipse,” and AMD’s SVP of Radeon GPU Technology David Wang claims it’s “the first of multiple planned generations of AMD RDNA graphics in Exynos SoCs.” On the CPU side, the Exynoss 2200 employs Armv9 cores, including one high-performance Cortex-X2 “flagship core,” three balanced Cortex-A710 cores, and four more efficient Cortex-A510 cores. The ISP architecture is designed to enable camera sensors of up to 200 megapixels, one of which Samsung unveiled last year. There’s also an updated NPU that Samsung claims gives twice the performance of its predecessor.
Although models marketed in the United States and certain other markets use Qualcomm’s Snapdragon SoCs, Samsung’s highest-end Exynos CPUs normally make their way into the company’s flagship Galaxy S phone series. Other phone makers, such as Vivo, occasionally use Exynos CPUs in their own smartphones, but we’ll have to wait till we get our hands on the rumored Galaxy S22 to see if AMD’s technology translates into a significant improvement in mobile GPU performance.
In 2019, AMD and Samsung announced a partnership, with AMD’s graphics technology expected to be used in Exynos smartphone chips. Early in 2021, rumors hinted that AMD-powered Samsung chips might be on the way, and AMD confirmed at Computex that a future Exynos mobile system-on-chip will have RDNA 2 graphics technology.
The Exynos 2200 was intended to be released sooner, however Samsung unexpectedly failed to show up for its own launch event on January 11th. Exynos CPUs are typically reserved for markets outside of North America, while Qualcomm’s Snapdragon mobile processors are used in the United States. That would rule out the AMD GPU and its ray tracing capabilities in the United States, but we’ll have to wait until the Galaxy S22 is released to know for sure.