Samsung is reportedly working on a laptop based on its own Exynos system-on-chip that features a built-in AMD RDNA-based GPU. The system will run Microsoft's Windows 10 and compete against always-connected personal computers (ACPCs) based on Qualcomm's Snapdragon platforms for laptops.
Samsung licensed AMD's Radeon RDNA GPU IP in 2019 and promised that the first products to use AMD's graphics technology would be available within the next two years. Samsung's latest Exynos 2100 SoC that powers international versions of the Galaxy S21 smartphones continues to use Arm's Mali-G78 MP14 graphics, but when launching it early this year, Samsung said its 'next flagship product' would use an AMD-powered Exynos. The company did not elaborate on which product that would be, which ignited rumors about a new high-end smartphone with Radeon GPU. But if a publication from ZDNet Korea quoted by Engadget is correct, this is not the case.
Samsung is prepping an Exynos SoC that is designed specifically for PCs. The chip will be tailored for performance and include Arm CPU cores as well as an AMD RDNA-based GPU. Under the terms of the deal with AMD, Samsung gets access to the architecture, but not exactly a product design. As such, the GPU will be custom, so it will be interesting to see how it stacks up against AMD's own integrated GPUs.
The machine itself will naturally include Samsung's DRAM, 3D NAND, display, battery, and other components produced by Samsung or its divisions. Ideologically, this Windows 10 PC will be the successor of Samsung's Galaxy Book S that's based on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx SoC.
The machine's exact specifications are unknown, but the source claims that it will be released in the third quarter of this year. Samsung has not commented on the news story, for obvious reasons.
Apple announced plans to switch all of its MacOS-based computers to its own SoCs within the following few years back in 2020, and the first systems based on the M1 processor received generally positive reviews.
Samsung will be the first Windows PC maker to use its own Arm-based SoC instead of Intel's x86 processors. Until now, PC makers who wanted to offer a Windows on Arm computer had to rely on Qualcomm's Snapdragon, so with Samsung's next-gen Exynos, customers will now have more choice. Meanwhile, Samsung's Exynos SoC with AMD graphics will compete against Intel's processors and AMD's CPUs, too.