While we know that Google is working on a big, fully-custom Tensor chip for 2025, a new report sheds a bit of light on the stopgap that is Tensor G4, the chip set to show up in 2024’s Pixel 9 series.
The third iteration of Google Tensor, as previously reported, is expected to be a rather big upgrade over previous models. Much more modern hardware, a new layout, improvements to Samsung’s 4nm manufacturing process, and an apparent upgrade to cooling make for what could be a much better Tensor chip. But, apparently, the following year won’t see an upgrade nearly as big.
Android Authority reports citing a “Google insider” that, as expected, Tensor G4 in the Google Pixel 9 won’t be very big upgrade.
Rather, it will be only a slight improvement over Tensor G3. Where Tensor G3 is known as “Zuma,” Tensor G4 is reportedly codenamed “Zuma Pro.” The chip is still made with Samsung’s help and manufacturing and is apparently based on the “Ripcurrent 24” development board, up from Tensor G3’s “Ripcurrent” board. As for what’s actually new, it’s hard to say at this point, but the codenames certainly imply a fairly tame year-over-year update.
This minor upgrade is apparently because Tensor G4 is effectively a chip sitting in limbo as we wait for Google’s fully custom chip, set to be Tensor G5 in the “Pixel 10.”
This was largely known, as a report earlier this year revealed that Google’s fully custom, TSMC-made chip was delayed to 2025 after originally being planned for a 2024 debut. This latest report adds that the chip’s codename is “Laguna Beach” with the baseboard being “ChallengerDeep.”
Of course, this is all still quite a ways into the future, and we’re still waiting on Tensor G3’s actual debut. The new chip, which seems reasonably promising compared to past models, is expected in the Pixel 8 series which Google is confirmed to reveal in full on October 4.
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