Samsung has confirmed that it will commence mass production of its 5nm process node within Q2 2020.
The news came following Samsung's Q1 2020 financial results which showed that its total revenue was down 7.6 percent on the previous quarter but 5.6 percent up from a year ago. The firm has mainly seen an increase in demand for server and mobile components with memory earnings also higher.
The company has already predicted that the memory business will remain solid throughout the second quarter but expect overall earnings to decline due to the impact of COVID-19. It's cautious about how the mobile market may also soften due to the increase in people working from home as well as people simply spending less. Overall demand for smartphones seems to be lower even despite Samsung going all-in with 5G handsets in recent times. Indeed, the firm plans to continue to strengthen its product lineup with more premium models and an expansion of offerings of 5G models for mass market.
Where things get more interesting for the hardware consumer is that Samsung has also used this time to confirm its work on mass-producing its 5nm products. In a statement, we discovered that the firm aims to 'expand EUV leadership, beginning with the start of mass production of 5nm products, while closely monitoring the uncertain market situation caused by COVID-19'. Its development of GAAFET (gate-all-around FET) 3-nanometer silicon fabrication process is also underway too which seems rather promising.
Ultimately though, it's 5nm that seems initially exciting stuff. It hopefully means that those rumours about Nvidia working on 5nm GPUs is reality. There's even a chance that it means Ampere will be 5nm EUV-based given Nvidia's close ties with Samsung as its foundry partner for the next-generation of GPUs. Although, it does seem much more likely that this might come after Ampere.
Still, with Nvidia's GTC 2020 keynote address coming up in a couple of weeks, it'll be interesting to see what actually comes out of it.
Whatever the news brings, it's good to see that despite the setbacks of COVID-19, Samsung is still pressing on with its mass production plans sooner rather than later.
May 15 2020 | 11:00