Samsung’s Galaxy S25 series could be Snapdragon-only, not by choice but forcefully. A reputed industry insider claims the company is struggling with the yield of its next-gen flagship Exynos processor. The situation appears so bad that the Korean firm may have to ship the 2025 Galaxy S models with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 globally.

The Galaxy S25 series could run the latest Snapdragon chip globally

In 2023, Samsung exclusively used a Snapdragon chip for the Galaxy S23 series. It didn’t even make a flagship Exynos chip last year. The company identified problems with its in-house processors and decided to take a break to fix those. It returned with a much-improved Exynos 2400 for the Galaxy S24 series. The chip powers the smaller two models in most parts of the world, excluding Canada, China, Japan, and the US. The Galaxy S24 Ultra runs the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 globally.

While Galaxy fans were initially skeptical about Samsung bringing back Exynos to its flagships, the Exynos 2400 turned out to be better than expected. It still lags behind the Snapdragon counterpart in some areas, but there is no longer a massive gap between the two. Early rumors say the Korean firm will further improve its chip game with the Exynos 2500. It could surpass the Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 in power and performance thanks to Samsung’s second-gen 3nm process.

However, according to renowned analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Samsung is struggling with the yield of its first 3nm smartphone chip. The yield rate is lower than expected, so much so that the company may not be able to produce a sufficient amount of Exynos 2500 processors for the Galaxy S25 series. As such, it could exclusively use the Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 for its 2025 flagships. Samsung may even forfeit the development of the Exynos 2500 if it has to go all-in with Snapdragon.

It’s both good and bad news

Galaxy fans may not complain if Samsung doesn’t launch an Exynos version of its Galaxy S25 flagships. Despite the rumored improvements, the Exynos 2500 may not pull a huge lead over the Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 if at all. After all, Qualcomm is also hard at work improving its chip. The new Snapdragon will be manufactured on TSMC’s second-gen 3nm process. It will feature a more powerful NPU and other upgrades tailored for the next generation of on-device AI applications.

However, Snapdragon exclusivity for the 2025 Samsung flagships may be bad news too. The same source recently claimed that Qualcomm may increase the price of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 by up to 30%. The new chip could cost as much as $260, up from $200. If earlier rumors are accurate, it would be the second consecutive year of a big price hike. Samsung may not be able to absorb the added cost and pass it on to consumers, leading to a global price increase for the Galaxy S25 series.

All this said, the Galaxy S25 lineup is still several months away. Samsung must be working overtime to improve its 3nm yield. If things get better soon enough, it might not exclusively use the Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 for its new flagships. The Exynos 2500 could power the phones, at least the Galaxy S25 and Galaxy S25+, in some markets. The Galaxy S25 Ultra could still be Snapdragon-only. Leaks and rumors about the 2025 Samsung flagships should get more elaborate in the coming months.

[ For more curated Samsung news, check out the main news page here]

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