Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S7 flagship smartphone could be getting a processor upgrade and may be undergoing a new Agile development process that is helping to bring it to market sooner than in the past.
The potential replacement of the existing 64-bit Exynos 7 processors in the current Galaxy S6 smartphones (pictured) with Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processors was reported in an Aug. 10 story by GforGames, which also said that the new Agile design process was in use to shave one to two months off its expected typical development path to get it ready by December.
Leaked documents show that the Snapdragon 820 processors in photos of internal Samsung documents that are purported to be related to the rumored phones and the company's Android M upgrade program, according to GforGames.
"So, if these leaks are the real deal, it looks like Samsung is strongly considering outfitting the Galaxy S7 with Qualcomm's Snapdragon 820," the story reported. "However, we're sure that the Galaxy S6 and Snapdragon 810 pair was put through the motions at one point and we all know how things turned out."
While the Galaxy S7 is still months away, Samsung is planning to unveil additional expected editions of other flagship mobile devices at a special Samsung Unpacked 2015 preview event on Aug. 13 at Lincoln Center in New York City, according to an earlier eWEEK report. The announcements will be about a month before Samsung's normally scheduled September launches so it can try to beat Apple in the marketplace.
The company has released no details about the Unpacked event, other than its time and date, which is Samsung's usual practice just before its latest product announcements. Most likely to be touted will be the latest version of its Note phablet, probably to be called the Note 5, as well as an even-larger version of the Galaxy S6 Edge, which was just introduced in April with its standard Galaxy S6 stablemate.
For Samsung, the stakes of these product announcements remain big as the company continues to struggle with market share, revenue and profit in a smartphone marketplace that has been dominated in recent years by arch-rival Apple.
Earlier in July, Samsung announced that its estimated second-quarter 2015 figures show expected drops in revenue and profit as the huge technology company continues to be plagued by disappointing financial results. In estimates released July 6, Samsung said it expects to report operating profits of $6.1 billion for the quarter ended June 30, which is a 4 percent drop from the same period a year ago, as well as revenue of $42.3 billion, 8.4 percent lower than the total one year ago. The company will announce its actual second-quarter financial numbers on July 30.
The estimated figures are particularly disappointing for the company because in April it released its new flagship smartphones, the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge, to battle back against Apple's hugely popular iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus models, which came out in September 2014.
Samsung's Note phablets are a cross between a smartphone and a tablet, providing users with a noticeably larger screen and a built-in removable stylus that allows users to "write" and draw on the display, which can then be captured in files and saved and sent to others. The next Note device is expected to follow the existing Note 4 and Note 4 Edge, which has a display that wraps around both edges of the device. The upcoming Galaxy Note is important to Samsung as it continues to seek products that will capture the imaginations and purchasing dollars of consumers and enterprise users.
Since Apple's launch of its latest iPhones, the company has been setting sales records and raked in billions of dollars, which likely has caused heartburn for Samsung executives.
Samsung's Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge smartphones have been selling well, but the company misjudged the desirability of the larger, more expensive S6 Edge and didn't order enough production, which has hurt revenue. The company ended up having more white S6 phones than it could sell and not enough S6 Edge handsets, which hurt sales, revenue and profit figures, according to a recent eWEEK report.
Samsung has been hit hard in recent years by lower sales of its mobile phones, which have been losing ground to cheaper phones from Chinese handset makers, and from stiffer competition from Apple and other competitors. Much of the recent sales slump likely was due to consumers who were waiting to see the then-new iPhones and Samsung's own replacement for its earlier flagship Galaxy S5 phone.