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HTC One X, One S, and more may be delayed, Snapdragon S4 to blame

Posted: , by Nick T.

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HTC One X, One S, and more may be delayed, Snapdragon S4 to blame
Uh oh. If the following rumor turns out to be correct, this could spell trouble for all devices that sport a Snapdragon S4 processor. According to SemiAccurate, TSMC is having serious troubles manufacturing 28nm chips. In fact, the company has halted their production in mid-February and is not likely to resume making them before this month's end.

What does that have to do with Qualcomm's Snapdragon S4 chip, you ask? Well, Qualcomm may have designed the S4, which indeed uses a 28nm manufacturing process, but it is TSMC that actually takes care of its manufacturing. And without the chips, production of the devices that use them may be facing a delay.

Among the devices that use a Snapdragon S4 processor are the HTC One X for AT&T and the HTC One S, which are both expected to hit the shelves this spring, as well as the Panasonic ELUGA Power and the Asus PadFone, which are expected to be made available for purchase in April. Note that the launch of the international version of the HTC One X should not be affected by the manufacturing issues as it uses a different processor, namely the quad-core Tegra 3 by NVIDIA. 

Bear in mind, however, that this is nothing but a rumor, so the troubles that TSMC is facing may not be that serious, if existent at all. Hopefully, the aforementioned devices will all launch within their projected time frames. We will be keeping our fingers crossed.

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posted on 09 Mar 2012, 05:24 2

1. KingKurogiii (Posts: 5548; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)


whup! if this gets delayed too long Qualcomm will be right at the bottom again especially considering that this is when they're supposing to be producing Adreno 3xx powered S4s and that the OMAP5 and the Exynos5xxx are rearing up for launches.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 06:48

4. kamejoko (Posts: 106; Member since: 10 Nov 2011)


Because TSMC are still using Poly/Sion made transistor.
SS so smart when use HKMG made transistor.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 07:18 2

5. remixfa (Posts: 13902; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


Any delay at all puts them within the possible SGS3 launch window. If that happens, HTC and others counting on this chip are DOA, as everyone will just get the SGS3 instead for similar pricing. Their only hope for big sales was to get out well enough ahead of the SGS3 and get those early sales. If it comes out with in a month of the announced SGS3 launch (whenever that may be) it will be too late as most customers will just wait.

Qualcomm never got off the bottom. In actual physical phone testing between the OneX with T3 and OneS with S4, they mostly tied, and the T3 beat it in a few categories, all while running a much higher resolution and 75% more screen density. I'd safely assume that if they were running the same screens, the T3 would have beaten it pretty handily.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 07:36 1

6. KingKurogiii (Posts: 5548; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)


that's what i thought before too until i found out that even this variation of the S4 actually uses Krait architecture which is based on ARM's Cortex-A15. it benchmarks surprisingly well and beats out the Tegra III in most ways. you'll find this to be true with more in-depth research.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 09:03 1

7. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 3770; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)


Yeah the quad-core 28nm S4 Krait processors with Adreno 320 are going to be some very sweet chips indeed.

People seem to forget the Tegra 3 is a quad-core, the S4 that is on the HTC One S is a dual-core. So if a dual-core is at least keeping up with a quad-core without the Adreno 320, I say it's a perfect measuring stick of what the S4 quad-core will be. In essence it will be a total BEAST!

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 14:01

8. KingKurogiii (Posts: 5548; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)


all the Tegra III is is last year's tech with more cores, if it didn't come to market as early as it did i would have disregarded it completely. i still doubt Qualcomm's ability to keep up with Samsung and Texas Instruments but we'll see.

posted on 11 Mar 2012, 07:51

9. Bangthering_007 (Posts: 36; Member since: 21 Feb 2012)


You are totally r8!! Tried to prove it to @remixfa in a preivious post who I should say partially agreed. The thing is most think that it is still an A9 based Soc which ain't true as a $3 bill. S4's KRAIT got the equivalent MIPS score to A15's, but people still are troubled accepting.

posted on 11 Mar 2012, 10:03

10. KingKurogiii (Posts: 5548; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)


count me as one of the people that thought it was just a scaled down version of the S3 pretty much but somebody like you that knew better got me to look it back up and see that it does actually have superior architecture. o:

posted on 14 Mar 2012, 08:44 1

11. Bangthering_007 (Posts: 36; Member since: 21 Feb 2012)


Hail the King!!

posted on 14 Mar 2012, 13:41 1

12. remixfa (Posts: 13902; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


Its not an A15. Its not an A9 either. Its an "equivilant". And the honest matter is that its only about a 30% improvement from the stock A9 architecture. That does not put it on A15 playgrounds. It puts it a hair above an exynos on paper, and in the real world testing that we've seen. Its about the same as the A9 quad T3, which IS nice. But like KK said, if the T3 was months from launching, instead of launching months ago, we would be ignoring it.
So if we would be ignoring the T3 "if it got launched on the same time scale as the S4", why would I pay attention to the S4 which runs similarly to a little bit slower than the T3 on real world benchmarks (not that reference board that Qualcom tried to use as a bench).

The S4 is delayed so it seems, which puts it within the possible window of the Exynos quadcore packed SGS3. If that is true, the S4 is DOA to power freaks, as the quad Exynos handily beats the S4. S4 phones should have launched in January/Febuary to give it a comfortable sales cushion from the SGS3.

The SGS3 is going to suck all the sales out of the high end market... period.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 10:13

15. Bangthering_007 (Posts: 36; Member since: 21 Feb 2012)


Well thats what I exactly tried to say in my post "equivalent MIPS scores". I know qualcomm licenses the ARM A-15 Architecture but only uses the instruction set and custom builds their SOC architecture but the point I'm trying to stress is that they are building a core more compared to A-15 with KRAIT rather than A-9. They did the same thing with SCORPION too but it was based on A-8. Thats the main point I'm trying to highlight. I know u hate "crapdragons" but u might change your opinion with S4's KRAIT, atleast on the CPU part lest the GPU cause the MDP's benchmarks put it on a very bar to cross.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 17:19

18. KingKurogiii (Posts: 5548; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)


the point we're trying to make is sure it's impressive NOW but NOW is only going to last a month, two at the most and then we're going to be seeing what the Galaxy S III is made of and i can about guarantee you it's going to embarrass anything S4 powered on arrival.

posted on 14 Mar 2012, 13:42

13. remixfa (Posts: 13902; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


Krait is not based off A15. Qualcomm does not use ARM archetecture. Acording to Q, its "just like an A15". And its not. Its better than an A9 by a little bit, but it sure doesnt play with the A15 crowd.

posted on 14 Mar 2012, 13:54

14. KingKurogiii (Posts: 5548; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)


yeah, i knew it wasn't actually ARM but i guess i didn't word that quite correctly. i was trying to say Krait was more like ARM's Cortex-A15 than A9.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 10:22

16. Bangthering_007 (Posts: 36; Member since: 21 Feb 2012)


"A little bit better than A-9" ?? How exactly can you say so, when all other actual tech experts feel its a magnificient SOC and will be comparable to actual A-15 at the worst? I'm just asking the reason thats making you think so (only a little bit better), other than the usual aversion you have for "crapdragons"!! Just curious. Will wait till Q1 2013 for OMAP 5 to compare with KRAIT newayz.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 11:00 1

17. remixfa (Posts: 13902; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


what experts ? what imperial data? those reference board controlled tests that qualcomm put out a month ago? in real life the T3 enabled ones tied or beat the s4 enabled oneS while pushing 70% more pixels than the oneS. that's nowhere near "A15" performance. in those same tests they both do better than the year old exynos but not by a wide margin.
the A9 exynos 4212 quadcore is promising DOUBLE the power of the current exynos which is well beyond what either the T3 or S4 can do. the A15 exynos 5212 promises the same power but with only 2 cores. who knows how much power the quad core will have.

is the s4 a nice improvement in every way over the s3... absolutely. is it more power that. most will use? absolutely. is it anywhere near an A15 class chip? No. better than the best CURRENT A9 exynos by a small margin, but the 4212 dual A9 built on 32nm will beat the krait. the quad will leave it in the dust. and real A15s won't even see it in the rear view mirror.

if you take a pinto and add a sport suspension and a Turbo it will be way faster.. however don't think that all of a sudden it can take a Lamborghini off the line.

posted on 17 Mar 2012, 06:25

19. Bangthering_007 (Posts: 36; Member since: 21 Feb 2012)


I wasnt talking about the Qualcomm released benchmarks. I was referring to the CPU/GPU benchmarking techs with their custom teardown of the MDP (Mobile Development Platform 8960) released by Qualcomm for OEMs and developers. It is the most optimised Software/Hardware combo you'll ever find, meaning the true prowess of S4 KRAIT can be seen there.

This MDP benchmarks put it around 50% faster than current best A-9s out there (your Exynos and OMAP 4460). This is a fact, believe it or not. Moreover according to ARM their A-15s would around 40% faster than their current A-9s. This too is a fact FYI.

But Samsung obviously has an advantage with its in house FAB and custom silicon manufacturing tech, it can more efficiently produce SOCs but theoretically speaking 28nm is better than 32nm fabrication tech ofcourse that can be neutralised with Sammys inhouse manufacturing.

But the point still stands that the KRAIT is equivalent to a A-15 at the worst.

FYI 4212 is an OC current 4210. 4412 is what you are referring to quad core. And im sure it will be equivalent to S4s performance. Come out & experience the future!!

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 05:25

2. KingKurogiii (Posts: 5548; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)


well they'll at least be above Nvidia anyway which is a step up...

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 06:47 1

3. kamejoko (Posts: 106; Member since: 10 Nov 2011)


Because TSMC are still using Poly/Sion made transistor.
SS so smart when use HKMG made transistor.

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