Galaxy S7 Group MWC AH 3

After the Samsung Galaxy S7, Heat Pipes Might Catch On

February 26, 2016 - Written By Mihai Matei

Although Samsung and Qualcomm have been collaborating for years, last year Samsung has decided against using the Snapdragon 810 in its flagship phones, on account that the chipset did not meet the smartphone maker’s quality expectations. On short, the Snapdragon 810 proved to have overheating issues, which led to numerous smartphone makers switching to a different SoC, or throttle the SD 810’s performance in order to try and avoid these problems. Although the recently announced Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge borrow the older formula and make use of a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 in certain regions, early teardowns of the aforementioned devices have shown that Samsung took certain precautions and fitted the CPU with a heat pipe. Fitting a smartphone with a passive cooling system is a somewhat unusual solution, but fresh reports claim that Samsung’s move could persuade more smartphone makers to do the same.

As yet there are no reports to suggest that the Snapdragon 820 experiences overheating, but regardless, it looks like Samsung wanted to take a safer route with its latest flagships and thus, the company fitted the aforementioned chip with a passive cooling system. New reports now claim that because the Samsung Galaxy S7 series uses a heat pipe, more smartphone makers could follow in the Korean tech giant’s footsteps and apply a similar cooling solution to their future handsets, effectively increasing demand and creating more opportunities for heat pipe manufacturers. On the other hand, the same report mentions that suppliers of passive cooling systems have yet to create molds for smartphone heat pipes, on account that demand has not yet grown to a significant level. Then again, creating a heat pipe mold for a wide variety of smartphones might not be an easy task, as each smartphone tends to have a different internal design, which means each different model technically requires a uniquely shaped heat pipe.

It should be noted that although the Samsung Galaxy S7 series might be the one to start the heat pipe trend in the smartphone world, the aforementioned device is not the first to adopt a passive cooling system. In fact, the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium released last year, was reportedly fitted with a heat pipe in an attempt to keep the Snapdragon 810’s temperatures in check.