Qualcomm officially this weekannounced the new eight-core Snapdragon 855 mobile processor for top-end Android smartphones, but the manufacturer did not disclose all the details right away. As it turned out, for good reason. Despite the announced expansion of the functional, some innovations were not so transparent and obvious.
For example, a Snapdragon X50 modem with support5G networks are not an integral part of Snapdragon 855. Inside the processor, there is only a Snapdragon X24 modem with 4G LTE support and data transfer rates up to 2 Gb / s. The novelty is a separate microcircuit, and each manufacturer can decide for itself whether to add support for a new cellular standard to flagship products or not. Thus, more affordable versions of smartphones on a fresh top-end platform without 5G support and the most advanced versions of the same device may appear on the market.
One more thing missing in Snapdragon 855a separate unit of neural computing (NPU) for working with AI, virtual, and augmented reality. All the tasks of these areas will work together to perform the GPU accelerator and the Hexagon 690 auxiliary chip. This method of distributing and performing work in Qualcomm was called the 4th generation of the AI Engine. According to the developer, his performance doubles the capabilities of Snapdragon 845 and equates to 7 TOPS.
All other Qualcomm statements turned out to bereliable. The 8-core Snapdragon 855 is built using 7-nanometer technology and three clusters of Kryo 485 cores (one core with a clock frequency of 2.84 GHz, three at 2.42 GHz, and four with a frequency of 1.78 GHz). Such a construction of the system has increased performance by up to 45% compared to last year’s Snapdragon 845. Inside the single-chip platform, in addition to the Snapdragon X24 modem, there is an Adreno 640 graphics chip, a Spectra 380 and Hexagon 690 image processing co-processor.
The chip supports the use of RAMLPDDR4X with a frequency of 2133 MHz, single camera with a resolution of 48 megapixel or dual with sensors of 22 megapixel, fast charging Quick Charge 4+, Bluetooth 5.0 and Wi-Fi 6 with MIMO technology, ultrasonic fingerprint scanner Qualcomm 3D Sonic Sensor, Qualcomm aptX Adaptive codecs and Qualcomm TrueWireless Stereo Plus, virtual reality up to 8K resolution and recording HDR videos in 4K at 60 fps. In addition, smartphones with Snapdragon 855 will be able to create portrait mode not only when taking pictures, but also when recording video clips with a moving frame. Also, the flagship of the new top-end chip will be able to take advantage of the technology inherent in the latest iPhone. HEIF or high-resolution image format will compress photos to half the size of regular JPEG without losing photo quality.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 chip will allowSmartphone makers use multiple voice assistants. It supports Google Assistant, Alexa, Bixby, Baidu DuerOS and more. Qualcomm also uses AI to combat echo and background noise, which can interfere with voice commands.
The new Snapdragon 855 feature, called Cinema Core, will give you 7 times greater energy savings when watching videos from services such as Amazon Video.
The new graphics processor Adreno 640 hasperformance is 30% faster, which will allow you to run HDR-games. As a video viewing function, HDR makes images more realistic. Qualcomm says that HDR games on smartphones will have over a billion shades of colors. For VR, Snapdragon 855 provides breathtaking 8K resolutions at 120 frames per second.
Snapdragon 855 commercial shipments to device makers are scheduled for the beginning of the first half of 2019.