The head of Samsung Mobile and the co-CEO of Samsung Electronics J. K. Shin has told buyers that it doesn’t matter which processor is running in their new Galaxy S4 and that most people won’t notice a difference, nor will they really care. The new Samsung Galaxy S4, which is launching this week, comes in several different variants including models with different amounts of on-board storage, support for LTE and models with different processors. The USA and Europe will receive models using the quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor, while the so-called International version will be powered by the Samsung Exynos 5 processor that uses ARM’s big.LITTLE architecture.
Initial benchmarks have shown that the Exynos 5, which has eight processing cores – four high performance and four low power, is faster than the quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 600. This means that those outside of the USA and Europe will actually have a higher performing version of the Galaxy S4. Since the USA and Europe are prime markets for Samsung this has led to various discussions and even criticisms of Samsung for shipping the lower performing model to these key markets.
During his remarks J. K. Shin squashed the rumor that Samsung was using the Qualcomm CPU in the USA and Europe because the Exynos 5 doesn’t support LTE. The Exynos 5 does now support LTE and the reason given that Samsung uses two CPUs is simply an issue of supply and demand.
“We use multiple different sources. It’s a sourcing issue.”
Because the worldwide demand for the S4 is expected to be very high then Samsung has been forced to find two suppliers for the processors – itself and Qualcomm. However this strategy, while sound in theory, may already be failing as Samsung is now admitting that the Galaxy S4 will be available in limited supply at launch. According to an official statement released by Samsung, “Due to overwhelming global demand of Galaxy S4, the initial supply may be limited. We expect to fulfill inventory to meet demands in the coming weeks.”
What do you think, does it matter which of these two very powerful CPUs are in your new S4?