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Google could make a long-overdue switch with the Pixel 10 in 2025

Chips produced by TSMC have generally enjoyed better battery life and sustained workloads.

Published onMay 17, 2024

Google Pixel 8 Pro and Pixel 8 held in hand
C. Scott Brown / Android Authority
  • A leaker has corroborated claims that TSMC will produce chipsets for the Pixel 10 series and later.
  • This would be a big change for Google as Samsung has produced all of its Pixel chipsets.
  • TSMC has generally offered more efficient processors than chips produced by Samsung.

Google’s Tensor processors for its Pixel phones have long been developed in partnership with Samsung and manufactured by Samsung Foundry. We’ve previously heard reports that Google could switch things up with the Tensor G5 inside the Pixel 10 range, and another source has echoed this claim.

Leaker Revegnus posted on X that Tensor chipsets from the Pixel 10 series onwards will be manufactured by TSMC. The tipster also added that Google will use TSMC’s 3nm process (ostensibly for the Tensor G5, at the very least). They also added that Google was expanding its R&D facility in Taiwan and hiring more local semiconductor engineers in preparation for the switch to TSMC.

Evidence mounting for Tensor G5 by TSMC

This post corroborates earlier reports about Google’s manufacturing plans for its Tensor smartphone processors. Back in July 2023, The Information reported that Google had delayed its first fully custom Tensor chip to 2025 and that TSMC would produce this silicon on a 3nm process. A news report from January also suggested that Google was a step closer to having its Tensor chipsets being made by TSMC.

The switch from Samsung Foundry to TSMC could be a huge deal for Pixel smartphones. Samsung has generally lagged behind TSMC when it comes to chipset production. We saw this play out back in 2022 when the Samsung-made Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 experienced poor battery life and sustained performance. However, the TSMC-made Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 saw significantly improved battery life and sustained performance.

There’s no guarantee that TSMC will continue to hold the upper hand over Samsung Foundry when the industry switches to the 3nm manufacturing node (expected to be used by next-generation flagship chipsets). A Korean outlet recently claimed that the Exynos 2500, which will apparently be a 3nm Samsung-made chip, will be more power-efficient than the TSMC-made Snapdragon 8 Gen 4. Even if this turns out to be true, history suggests that TSMC could be the better long-term partner.

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