Samsung Z Flip 6 Benchmark Rumor Suggests It'll Use Older Chipset

A Z Flip 6 specs leak hints at the clamshell phone's capabilities.

David Lumb Mobile Reporter
David Lumb is a mobile reporter covering how on-the-go gadgets like phones, tablets and smartwatches change our lives. Over the last decade, he's reviewed phones for TechRadar as well as covered tech, gaming, and culture for Engadget, Popular Mechanics, NBC Asian America, Increment, Fast Company and others. As a true Californian, he lives for coffee, beaches and burritos.
Expertise Smartphones | Smartwatches | Tablets | Telecom industry | Mobile semiconductors | Mobile gaming
David Lumb
2 min read
A folding phone "tented" upright on a table with its exterior screen lit and facing the reader, showing the time and a pretty landscape background.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5.

Lisa Eadicicco/CNET

Samsung has been quiet about any foldables it might release this year, but a new rumor sheds a bit of light around plans it might have for its Galaxy Z Flip 6 clamshell foldable.

The successor to last year's Galaxy Z Flip 5 could use an even older processor than expected. A pair of GeekBench benchmarks tied to the suspected model number of the Z Flip 6 have surfaced: one, which appeared last week, is powered by Qualcomm's latest-generation Snapdragon 8 Gen 3, while another that SamMobile discovered shows the upcoming phone using a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 (which powered last year's Z Flip 5). 

There are a few possibilities for why one phone would appear incognito with two different chipset configurations and codenames (Pineapple for the new silicon with 8GB of RAM, Kalama for the older with 12GB of RAM) on a benchmark site. The first is that Samsung is simply trying out its new hardware with last year's chip. But it could also be seeing if holding on to the older silicon would be feasible with more RAM, since it would likely be cheaper.

Read more: Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 6: 5 Ways It Can Beat the Z Flip 5

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 Looks Chic With Its New Cover Display

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But it's also possible that Samsung releases two Z Flip 6 series phones: a more powerful pro model with the new chipset and a lower-cost standard one with the old. Phonemakers have stuck with older silicon in new phones to reduce costs on models that aren't quite the top-tier of production -- including Apple, which used the previous year's A-series chips in the baseline iPhone 15 and saved its newest chips for the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max.

In releasing two models, Samsung would be following Motorola's lead after the latter debuted both the Motorola Razr Plus, a $1,000 clamshell foldable with a large 3.6-inch outer display, and the Motorola Razr 2023, a $700 device which had a smaller 1.5-inch outer display. It would make sense for Samsung to have its own cheaper foldable to compete.

But there's no guarantee that Samsung feels compelled to fight for customers at that cheaper price point. While its share of the global foldables market fell to 70% last year compared with 80% in 2022, according to a TrendForce report published in February, Samsung still dominates the niche. It can lean on its brand name to sell folding-display devices and fight for a market category that isn't increasing as quickly as originally expected, with an estimated 17.7 million foldables sold in 2023 (they were projected to grow to 27 million by 2025).

Even if the Z Flip 6 uses a slightly older chipset, it likely wouldn't affect its performance, as the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is still powerful and achieves higher benchmarks than its seventh-generation and lower silicon siblings. And phones like the Z Flip 5 using the older chip can still run some Galaxy AI features.

Neither Samsung nor Qualcomm immediately responded to requests for comment. 

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