Technology, Process and Cost
Samsung SFG-D0100 5G n261 mmWave CPE Chipset for Verizon
By Yole SystemPlus —
A complete study of the first generation of the 5G millimeter-wave chipset for Samsung’s Customer Premise Equipment routers used by Verizon.
Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 72 % in shipped units between 2020 and 2025, the 5G market is expected to be profitable in the next few years. In this context, Verizon has gambled on mmWave 5G communication using the n261 frequency band. In its first generation of end point system, the company decided to use 5G mmWave Customer Premise Equipment (CPE) from Samsung.
The Samsung SFG-D0100 is a CPE system used for FWA through 5G mmWave communication technology. After a detailed analysis of the board including 12-layers printed circuit board (PCB), routing and antenna system analysis, the report is focused on complete analysis of the main components forming the chipset and involving several companies. The analysis starts with the digital component processing the data, the mm1002U from Samsung and the power management integrated circuit (IC), the TPS65400 from Texas Instruments. Then the analysis goes to the next level of frequency with the intermediate frequency IC, the ARES custom IC and its frequency synthesizer companion, the STW81200 from STMicroelectronics. The last stage for mmWave frequencies includes the transceiver (RxTx), the PHOBOS custom IC.
In this chipset, several technologies were involved to provide power, efficiency, and cost effectiveness. The radio frequency (RF) IC works on 65 nm RFCMOS technology. The well-known 28 nm high-k metal gate (HKMG) implements ten cores in a big.LITTLE architecture in a digital IC. The power and clock supply uses Bipolar-CMOS-DMOS and SiGe BiCMOS technologies. All of this enables 2×2 Multiple Input Multiple Output (MIMO) 5G communication using two antenna system polarized at 45° and 135° for beam steering allowing up to eight carriers per CPE system.
This report includes a full investigation of the system, featuring a Computed Tomography (CT) scan of the RxTx Board. A detailed study of the Systems-in-Packages (SiPs), including die analyses, processes, and board cross-sections. It contains a complete cost analysis and a selling price estimation of the system.
Finally, in order to understand the evolution of the FWA chipset it features a technical and cost comparison with the latest 5G mmWave Antenna-on-Package (AoP) for handsets in Apple’s iPhone 12 series and with the first generation of 5G mmWave chipset from Qualcomm for CPE. This report shows the very first implementation of 5G n261 communication technology. It is a must-have to understand the latest implementation selected by Verizon based on the QTM527 from Qualcomm.
Complete teardown with:
- Analysis and description of the RF functions implemented in the system
- Detailed photos
- Precise measurements
- Materials analysis
- Manufacturing process flow
- Supply chain evaluation
- Manufacturing cost analysis
- Comparison with Qualcomm’s 5G mmWave CPE chipset and Apple’s 5G mmWave Handset Chipset
Company Profile and 5G Technology
Samsung SFG-D0100 Teardown
- Physical analysis methodology
- Main board
- Board view: dimensions, markings, CT scan, PCB routing, antenna structure, cross-sections, 5G chipset block diagram
- Component analysis: modem, PMIC, clock generator, RFIC, transceiver
- Package analysis : view and dimensions, opening and bill of material, cross-section (PCB, dimensions), process analysis
- Die analysis: view and dimensions, delayering and main block ID, cross-section, proces
- Physical analysis comparison
- Apple handset 5G mmWave chipset and Qualcomm’s CPE 5G mmWave chipset
Manufacturing Process Flow
- Die fabrication unit
- Packaging fabrication unit
- Overview of the cost analysis
- Supply chain description
- Yield hypotheses
- Die cost analyses: modem, PMIC, clock generator, RFIC, transceiver
- Front-end cost
- Wafer and die costs
- Package cost analysis: modem, PMIC, clock generator, RFIC, transceiver
- Packaging assembly cost
- Packaging cost by process step
- Final test cost
- Final assembly
- Component cost
- Cost analysis comparison
Estimated Chipset Cost Analysis