Samsung’s known for their smartphones and televisions, but did you know that they’re also one of the largest producers of memory and microprocessors? Last summer there was a piece in The Economist that highlighted the fact that 26% of the bill of materials of the iPhone goes straight into Samsung’s pocket. The screen, the RAM, the storage chips, the Apple A4/A5 chip, they’re all Samsung made. But let’s focus on processors for a second. Samsung has their own line of smartphone chips known as “Exynos”. They power a majority of the Galaxy family of products. According to a piece in The Wall Street Journal, Samsung’s recently been beefing up their chip department by hiring a bunch of AMD people. Who is AMD? We’ll forgive you for not knowing the answer to that question. They’re the other CPU vendor when it comes to personal computers. Intel owns more than 80% of that market, and for good reason too, they simply make better stuff.
So what’s Samsung going to do with all these AMD people? They’ll probably design the next generation of Exynos chips, but the report from the WSJ suggests that Samsung might get into the server game. There’s a lot of money to be made supplying datacenters to companies like Google and Facebook. That and Samsung also makes computers, air conditioners, refrigeration units, and a lot of the other things you’d need to setup a giant server farm.
Do we think Samsung would actually want to get into that business? Honestly … no, but we do think that Samsung wants to hire some additional talent when it comes to making chips. It’ll be something that could not only help separate Samsung from the competition, but Samsung could actually sell their chips to competitors for a premium.
We’ll be keeping an eye on this story as it evolves.