This is not much of a surprise, but it seems that Note 3 will be continuing on the path of the latest Samsung flagships, and will be using a Qualcomm processor in US, and Samsung’s own Exynos chips internationally. A new AnTuTu benchmark shows that an S800-powered Note 3 is being tested on the Verizon network in US, while other benchmarks before have shown the Exynos version.
The new benchmark scores 28,786 points with a 2.3 Ghz processor, while the previous benchmark showed a 33,082 score using an Exynos 5 Octa processor that was clocked at 1.9 Ghz. If these results are final, then the international Exynos version will be about 15% faster than the US one. This was to be expected, because we already knew that the 1.9 Ghz Tegra 4 that uses the same Cortex A15 core, should be faster than Snapdragon 800.
That being said, I’d be surprised if Samsung will sell them with this much of a gap in performance. However, they might think the US customers won’t mind it as much if the S800 version is also significantly more battery efficient. Samsung has been having some issues with the Exynos 5 Octa drivers, because this big.Little architecture is not only new to them, but also pretty hard to optimize, because they need to find the perfect balance when using either the Cortex A7 or the Cortex A15 cores.
It’s good to keep in mind that the Exynos-powered Galaxy S4 didn’t have much worse battery life than the US version, though. If Samsung will optimize the drivers some more, it’s possible there won’t be major differences in battery life between the two versions, but this could go either way, and it’s best to decide then if this issue affects your or not.
The version that is being shown in these benchmark is Android 4.2.2, but I’m quite certain Note 3 will launch with Android 4.3, if Android 4.3 will be released this month or soon. We already know that Samsung is going to skip Android 4.2 for the Note 2, so it wouldn’t make any sense to release the Note 3 with Android 4.2. They have at least 3 solid months until the Note 3 will start being shipped, and considering the Android 4.3 changes aren’t huge, I don’t think it’s going to be a problem for them to ship it with this version. I’d expect the Note 3 to come out sometime in November, as usual (although not necessarily in US this early).