Remember Odin? LG’s long running in-house mobile SoC project is finally coming to fruition in a brand new G3 variant for the Korean market.
LG announced today the release of the G3 Screen, a 5.9-inch variant of the G3 powered by a Nuclun processor, designed by LG in-house and built by chip foundry TSMC. The LG G3 Screen will be exclusive to the Korean market, and the device (previously known under its Liger codename) is notable mainly for its unique processing package.
Here are the main specs of the LG G3 Screen:
- Chipset: NUCLUN Octa-Core (1.5GHz Quad-Core +1.2GHz Quad-Core)
- Display: 5.9-inch Full HD IPS
- Memory: 32GB eMMC / 2GB RAM / MicroSD slot
- Camera: Rear 13MP OIS+ / Front 2.1MP
- Battery: 3,000mAh
- Operating System: Android 4.4 KitKat
- Size: 157.8x 81.8x 9.5mm
- Weight: 182g
- Network: LTE-ACat.6
- Colors: Black / White
The G3 Screen is designed to take advantage of the LTE-A connectivity available in South Korea, with supported download speeds of up to 225 Mbps. The feature set and software experience is largely the same as in the G3 flagship.
Getting back to Nuclun (pronounced NOO-klun), the processor is a big.LITTLE octa-core design featuring four 1.5GHz Cortex-A15 cores for high-performance tasks and four 1.2GHz Cortex-A7 cores for less intensive processing. The processor is able to fire cores individually in order to obtain top performance, battery saving, or a mix, depending on the needs of the device. As a big.LITTLE device with ARM Cortex A7 and A15 cores, Nuclun seems similar to the HiSilicon Kirin 925 processor used by Huawei in the Ascend Mate 7.
“Nuclun opens up a new chapter in LG’s history of innovation in the mobile industry,” said Dr. Jong-seok Park, head of LG Mobile. “With this in-house solution, we will be able to achieve better vertical integration and further diversity our product strategy against stronger competition. NUCLUN will give us greater flexibility in our mobile strategy going forward.”
LG used to have a chip manufacturing business, but it sold it to Hyundai back in 1999. The Korean company has used only Qualcomm chips for its high-end smartphones so far, and the G3 Screen appears to be a field test designed to determine the viability of Nuclun in real world.
The mobile SoC market is clearly dominated by Qualcomm, and even Samsung, one of the world’s top chipmakers (including memory) has been having trouble getting its Exynos chips into devices.
It remains to be seen whether LG will be successful with the Nuclun initiative. The company is enjoying a period of growth, fueled by good sales in its mobile division and especially at the high-end of the market. If the Korean market welcomes Nuclun warmly, it’s possible that at least some of next year’s G devices will feature LG-designed Nuclun processors as well.