It is no secret that Samsung uses Spreadtrum's SOCs for most of its budget and mid range smartphones. Spreadtrum's current best chip happens to be the SC9860- a 16nm process based 2GHz octacore 64 bit Cortex A53 SOC; these are chipset specifications from the yester-year and the technology is now moving into more powerful heterogeneous architectures involving ARM's Cortex A73, A72 and A57 standards(and the low powered A53 cores for better battery efficiency). Now, this might not make any sense to a normal user. But over at Samsung, Spreadtrum's slow development pace for its chips seems to be holding the Korean smartphone giant down from offering better (or more) midrange products.
Samsung still uses Qualcomm's Snapdragon chipsets as well as its own Exynos SOCs for most of its upper midrange smartphones. But as we have seen Samsung moving away from Snapdragon SOCs for its flagship devices (except for a few in some regions), it might not be long before Samsung does the same for its midrange devices as well. With Exynos' major focus being on the flagship devices as of now and keeping in mind Spreadtrum's slow development pace, it is no surprise that Samsung are in need of a new partner to keep its midrange and budget category relevant. Enter Mediatek, the Taiwanese midrange and budget chipset giant whose chipsets are being widely used in most of Chinese smartphones and tablets and even in some popular brands like HTC, Asus, LG and even Google's Android One Project.
There has been no official announcement yet coming from either of the companies about any partnership. But there have been instances of words being slipped by some of Mediatek's professionals about an ongoing partnership. The most recent report in support of this comes from Romania during the launch of the Allview P9 Energy smartphone where Arthur Wang, Senior Director MediaTek mentioned Samsung as "partner" during an interview when a question about Samsung's future smartphones was shot at him.
If this partnership turns out to be true, it could be a major win for Samsung as Mediatek has some really impressive chipsets under its name like the Helio X20 for upper midrange smartphones and the Helio P10 for the budget devices. Mediatek also recently gave details about its upcoming Helio X30 chipset which has quite a lot of horsepower up its sleeve to even challenge current gen chipsets on flagship devices.