Performance disparity between international and US models will likely grow with Galaxy Note 20

Performance disparity between international and US models will likely grow with Galaxy Note 20
The Exynos 990-powered Samsung Galaxy S20 created quite a ruckus, prompting disgruntled fans to file a petition against the company to stop using in-house chips. Samsung responded by asserting that all variants perform the same, although benchmark results say otherwise. Fast forward to now, Qualcomm has announced a refreshed version of the Snapdragon 865 that fueled the Galaxy S20 and it will likely be the driving force behind the US-bound Galaxy Note 20. The international variant, on the other hand, will probably retain the Exynos 990.

This has been reported by venerated leaker Ice Universe and backed up by XDA Developers' Max Weinbach who has not stumbled upon any new Samsung chip in the firmware he has.



Prior to this, the international variant of the Galaxy Note 20 was expected to carry the rumored Exynos 992 SoC. It was reported that the chip would be based on the 6nm manufacturing process, which would have given it a leg up over not just the Exynos 990, but also the Snapdragon 865 Plus because it's also built on 7nm node. 

The Exynos 992 was estimated to be 1 to 3 percent faster than the Snapdragon 865. The silicon was tipped to enter mass production next month and though it's hard to comment on Samsung's supposed plans, a pandemic-fueled disruption might have forced the chaebol to stick with the Exynos 990.

A quick look at the specifications sheet is enough to see why the Snapdragon 865 was a better option than the Exynos 990 for the Galaxy S20. Samsung's chip uses ARM's older Cortex-A76 CPU cores while the Snapdragon 865 is based on Cortex-A77 cores. Qualcomm also went for the Adreno 650 GPU, while Exynos 990 features ARM Mali G77 and it also throttles the GPU sooner. 

The Exynos variants of the Galaxy S20 also consumed more power and exhibited autofocus issues. These problems were taken care of with a software update. 

Given that the Snapdragon 865 Plus is an overclocked version of the Snapdragon 865, the performance disparity between the Exynos-fueled and Snapdragon-powered Galaxy Note 20 will be even greater when compared to the Galaxy S20 series. 

And in case you are wondering, in addition to the American model, the Japanese, Chinese, and South Korean versions of the Galaxy Note 20 will seemingly have the Snapdragon 865 Plus under the hood, and the European variants will feature the Exynos 990. 


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Galaxy Note 20
  • Display 6.7 inches
    2400 x 1080 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP (Triple camera)
    10 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 865
    8GB RAM
  • Storage 256GB, not expandable
  • Battery 4300 mAh
  • OS Android 10
    Samsung One UI

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