Samsung Releases Exynos 4 Quad Processor
April 27, 2012

Samsung Releases Exynos 4 Quad Processor

Michael Harper for

What has four cores but uses less power than 2? Samsung´s new flagship device processing chip.

Samsung Electronics introduced the power behind their new flagship smartphones today. The 1.4 GHz Exynos 4 Quad Processor will have its first chance in the spotlight when Samsung releases what is expected to be called the “Galaxy III S” in London on May 3.

Though the company has yet to officially release the name of their new flagship device, they have admitted their new ARM Cortex A9-based quad core processor is currently under production.

According to, this new processor not only doubles the amount of processing power of chips to come before it, it also uses 20% less power doing it.

In a statement, Samsung has said, "To improve power efficiency, Samsung adopted hot-plug functionality to support on-off switching for each core as well as the per-core dynamic voltage and frequency scaling (DVFS), which offers a dramatic reduction in power consumption by adapting different levels of voltage and frequency when changing workloads.”

For example, when the phone isn´t doing much or sitting at idle, the processor switches to dual core mode to conserve power. When the processor needs to do some heavy lifting, the likes of playing a graphics intensive game, all 4 cores spring into action.

As smartphone screens get brighter and cellular networks move to the faster “4G” variant, power consumption is a huge deal. This kind of minimal power usage could be welcome on next-generation devices such as Samsung´s new Galaxy phone, which is expected to have a 4.6-inch display replete with 1280-by-720 resolution and 4G LTE connectivity.

This new chip could have more to offer than simple modesty. Samsung has also promised this new chip will also offer enhanced multi-tasking performance, “enabling users to accomplish more tasks in a shorter period of time.”

"For example, a task such as streaming video can run on one core while the other cores update applications in the background, connecting to the web and scanning virus-check simultaneously," Samsung said.

Each of these improvements is indicative of a global movement towards desktop experiences in a handheld device. As these processors improve, so too will our handheld world.

"The application processor is a crucial element in providing our customers with PC-like experience on mobile devices," Hankil Yoon, senior vice president of Samsung's product strategy team, said in a statement. "Samsung's next Galaxy devices, which will be officially announced soon, offers uncompromised performance and ground-breaking multi-tasking features, thanks to Exynos 4 Quad's powerful performance and efficient energy management technology."

According to Samsung, the Exynos 4 Quad also scores high on looks, measuring a thin 12 mm X 12 mm X 1.37 mm.

This slim form factor will allow “mobile device designers to immediately adopt the new solution without additional cost, engineering or design efforts,” according to Samsung.

Not keeping all the processing goodness to themselves, Samsung also said these new processors are being sampled to other handset makers.