It is going to be sometime still for the Samsung Galaxy S9 to hit the market, but the vines are already buzzing with rumors and news from around the globe. The latest bit of news suggests that the flagship phone will use the SLP Mainboard. This makes perfect sense, because the more internal space could be made, the more scope there is for increasing the battery size. And that is pretty much a priority for all mobile phone makers right now, what with all the feature heavy smartphones in the market that eat charge like steel and plastic monsters.
So what is SLP Mainboard?
The Substrate-like PCP- or SLP as we popularly know it- mainboard can help in freeing up considerable internal space in the phone. It basically follows a stacked logic board design that helps store chips in stacks, ensuring that a lot of space is left to be used. Apple is probably going to be the first one to use it, and now Samsung is going to do the same apparently. An SLP Mainboard enables the manufacturer to increase the battery size to fit in the leftover space. This makes perfect sense as battery space is becoming ever more constricted in modern smartphones, thanks to the fact that manufacturers are constantly trying to make their phones even slimmer.
Also read: Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus rumors
How does this help Samsung?
Like any other smartphone of the modern era, Samsung’s phones also feature key applications like the application processor, NAND flash memory, and the DRAM. The chips for all these components are spaced out, taking up a lot of area. The introduction of the new SLP motherboard will mean that these will all be stacked together, allowing for thinner connections among them. This means that at least some of the new Samsung S9 phones will come with a bigger battery. This probably means that the phone sizes will be bigger as well; Samsung would not want to make the mistake it did with the S7- trying to fit in a large battery in a phone a size or two too small. However, it is not just about battery size and storage space; using the recently introduced Modified Semi-Additive Process, a semiconductor package technology, the SLP motherboards are almost twice as efficient and speedy than the high density interconnect motherboards that are being used till now.
What about the manufacturers?
Samsung is one of the biggest players in the smartphone market, and motherboard manufacturers would probably fall over themselves trying to get the tender for the SLP motherboards. This is a new technological development, and naturally not all the suppliers would be up to date with the advancements. It can be assumed that supplies that already deal in SLP motherboards will have an edge over those who don’t, and the latter is likely to lose out on considerable business. Moreover, Samsung is the second entry in the new motherboard area after Apple, and it can be predicted that with them upping the competition, more smartphone vendors will be jumping on the bandwagon. In fact, according to the Korean ETNews, Samsung is already in the process of discussion with four SKP suppliers, with Samsung Electro-Mechanics being one of the chief negotiators. This means that out of the ten companies that currently supply the HDI motherboards to Samsung, six will be losing a big chunk of their business.
Also read: Samsung Galaxy S9 concept design
Who will get the technology?
Right now, the features in the Galaxy S series phones vary slightly in accordance to the areas where the phones are being released. For instance, the western markets mostly enjoy the Qualcomm Snapdragon equipped phones, while the Asian markets, for the most part, get the Exynos powered version of the phones. Things will probably remain the same for the Galaxy S9. However, only the Exynos powered phones are being expected to initially get the new SLP motherboard, thanks to the fact that the Qualcomm Snapdragon chips are not particularly compatible with the SLP motherboard. However, it has been heard that the introduction of the SLP motherboards in the Exynos powered phones is more of a test drive; Samsung will most probably expand its horizons on receiving positive feedback.
Samsung’s decision to include the PCB motherboard is obviously a way of countering the impact the new iPhone will have. However, while the bigger battery size is most welcome, Samsung still has the daunting task of making the world forget about the Galaxy S7 fiasco. And all the while, Samsung must not forget the just having a big battery is not enough; it must also keep in mind the fact that smaller cell phones are all the rage right now, and a chunky device accommodating a large battery might not go down well with the audience.