Tuesday, July 5

Here are the latest Qualcomm processors and the new AR glasses | Digital Trends Spanish


Qualcomm today announced the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1the upgraded version of its flagship system-on-a-chip (SoC), while also marking a change to its new naming scheme for the 700 series with its release of the Snapdragon 7 Gen 1. Devices powered by these mobile platforms will hit the market starting in the current quarter of 2022. Additionally, the chipmaker is betting big on a mix of augmented and virtual realities with the introduction of its new wireless smart glasses that run on the platform. Snapdragon XR2.

Qualcomm dominates the mobile ecosystem with its wide range of silicon-based solutions for consumer electronics and telecommunications. Its Snapdragon 800 series has been the default solution for smartphone manufacturers to power their high-end products. That remains true to date with major devices including the Galaxy S22 series, the OnePlus 10 Pro, Motorola Edge Plus (2022), and many more relying on the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 for impressive performance. By comparison, the MediaTek Dimensity 9000, Samsung’s Exynos 2200, and Google’s Tensor have just a handful of takers.

Despite the success of its Snapdragon 8 series chips, Qualcomm has been releasing Plus variants to meet the breakneck growth in the smartphone industry. The Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 follows on from this lawsuit and builds on the already powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 with new features for improved performance, better gaming, and more efficient artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities. This is what the latest flagship chipset brings to the table.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1

With the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1, Qualcomm is aiming for higher performance and better power efficiency. The main core of the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 based on ARM’s Cortex X2 design has now been overclocked to a frequency of 3.2GHz, compared to the 3.0GHz clock speed of the non-Plus SoC. Meanwhile, the Cortex A710 performance and Cortex A510 efficiency cores continue to boast the same clock rates. The new flagship chip is also based on a 4nm process, the same as before.

Obvious performance improvements

Additionally, CPU and GPU power efficiencies have been improved by 30%. Overall energy efficiency has also been improved by 15%, which could remedy the reported heating problems in the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1. For users, that means the chipset will be able to support longer gaming sessions and better sustained workloads.

The new chipset also supports 8K video recording with support for HDR, HDR10+, HLG, and Dolby Vision. This has been available since the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, but Qualcomm is billing an elongated list of features as part of the new package. Similarly, the new chipset uses the same Snapdragon X65 modem powered by Qualcomm Fast Connect 6900 despite announcing the Snapdragon X70 modem earlier this month. For gaming, Qualcomm’s Elite Gaming features also support HDR gaming at 10-bit color depth, and that’s also something that it has existed for a while.

Among other really improved features in the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 is the power efficiency of the AI ​​engine in the chipset. Qualcomm claims a 20% increase in power output per watt of power delivered to the AI ​​engine. This also translates to improvements in better facial recognition with deep learning models and improved depth effects.

Many customers queuing

Despite the few improvements, Qualcomm has a long list of buyers for the new Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1. This list includes ASUS ROG, Black Shark, Honor, Lenovo and Motorola, Oppo and OnePlus, Vivo and its sub-brand iQOO, Xiaomi and Redmi, and ZTE along with its Nubia and RedMagic sub-brands. Surprisingly, the official announcement does not include Samsung despite a pop-up filtration which suggests that the Galaxy Z Flip 4 will be powered by the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1.

While the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 only offers marginal improvements, Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 7 Gen seems to be the true champion of the show. Here’s what the new 7-series chip has to offer over older products for the sub-flagship segment.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 7 Gen 1

The most intriguing announcement of the morning comes in the form of the new Snapdragon 7 Gen 1, which succeeds the Snapdragon 780G and mobile platform Snapdragon 778G Plus 5G. The Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 is now built on a 4nm node compared to the predecessor’s 5nm process. The new manufacturing process brings better performance and power efficiency to the chipset.

The new Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 is rumored to be more similar to the 8 Gen 1 than the older Snapdragon 700 series models. This is because as well as being based on the same 4nm process, it is suggested that the Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 will be equipped with newer ARM Cortex A710 cores for performance and Cortex A510 cores for power efficiency, the same as the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 and the latest 8 Plus Gen 1.

Significant CPU and GPU upgrades

While Qualcomm refrains from sharing details about the microarchitecture and clock speeds, the leaker Digital Chat Station It says that there are four Cortex A710 cores clocked at 2.36GHz, while the Cortex A510 cores are clocked at 1.80GHz. While these are in the same ballpark as the Snapdragon 780G, a more efficient manufacturing process is likely to boost performance.

Unlike the CPU, Qualcomm is sharing some stats on GPU performance. The Snapdragon 7 Gen 1’s Adreno GPU offers 20% faster rendering, which will deliver smoother UI animations and improved frame rate (expressed in frames per second or fps) while gaming. The chipset uses an Adreno 662 GPU according to the leaker quoted above. Considering that the Snapdragon 888 comes with an Adreno 660, and the increased numbering could mean better graphics performance.

For gaming specifically, the Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 borrows certain Elite Gaming features, such as the Frame Motion Engine, from the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1. Qualcomm claims this allows for up to twice the frame rate with the same power consumption. For once, that could mean the flagship Snapdragon 7 series chip could now support 60fps (or more) in graphics-intensive games like PUBG Mobile. The new chipset also supports Variable Rate Shading, or VRS, which improves frame rate by rendering different parts of the frame dynamically, so more GPU power can be used to render complex parts of the frame, while dedicated less energy to simpler parts.

Many firsts for the segment

Additionally, the upgraded GPU now also allows the Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 to support up to QHD+ displays compared to just Full HD+ on the Snapdragon 780G. The chipset also supports Snapdragon Sound for a more spatial and contextual audio experience while gaming.

The SoC also features an improved Spectra Image Signal Processor (ISP) that supports up to a 200-megapixel camera sensor, a slight increase over the previously supported 192MP sensor. Does that mean we will have smartphones with a functional 200MP camera? We don’t know for sure, and only time will tell. We already have 200MP sensors on the market, and the new chipset could start its adoption.

The Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 also features a newer 7th generation Hex AI engine, which offers a 30% improvement in AI applications. Qualcomm claims that the new AI engine enables better face detection and autofocus capabilities, even when a person is wearing a mask.

Qualcomm also extends its Trust Management Engine (TME) to the Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 for better security. TME is a chipset-level encryption system that prevents the injection of malicious code into Android-related system files. This means that it protects compatible smartphones against malware. Until now, the system has been limited to the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, and the Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 is the first SoC in the Snapdragon 7 series to feature it.

Seamless 5G, Wi-Fi 6E

Lastly, the chipset is based on a Snapdragon X62 5G modem with FastConnect 6900. The modem supports download speeds of up to 4.4 gigabits per second (Gbps) with a 2×2 MIMO (multiple input, multiple output) stream in mmWave and 4×4 sub-6GHz 5G MIMO signals. Meanwhile, FastConnect technology enables WiFi 6Ewith tri-band functionality, and support for Bluetooth 5.3 and Bluetooth LE Audio.

Honor, Oppo and Xiaomi will be the first to adopt the Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 chipset.

In addition to the two new mobile platforms, Qualcomm has also announced a new solution that lays the groundwork for the future of mobile computing.

Qualcomm AR Smart Viewer

The growing popularity of augmented and virtual realities and the growing buzz around the metaverse forces us to envision a future where we will interact with our environments through better utilization of technology. Technologies like AR and VR will play a big role in blurring the boundaries between the digital and physical worlds, and Qualcomm is showing us how it can be done in the coming years.

Alongside the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 and Snapdragon 7 Gen 1, Qualcomm showed off a reference prototype for wireless AR glasses. Dubbed the AR Smart Viewer, these glasses work with the Snapdragon XR2, Qualcomm’s existing platform for AR and VR headsets, including Meta’s Oculus Quest 2. The Smart Viewer has been developed by the Chinese company Goertek.

The lenses for each eye have a smart OLED screen with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 and a refresh rate of 90Hz to reduce motion blur. Along with display screens for each eye, the Smart Viewer also features two black-and-white and one color camera to track head movements and hand gestures in six degrees of freedom.

Distributed workload between smart glasses and phone

Smart glasses are designed so that workloads are distributed between them and a connected smartphone or hub where most of the processing happens. Since this is a wireless exchange of information, latency is bound to creep in, but Qualcomm claims that the Snapdragon XR2 platform can reduce it to less than three milliseconds.

The reference design supports Wi-Fi 6 and 6E along with Bluetooth, while Qualcomm also suggests that future variants are expected to feature 5G connectivity for seamless machine-to-machine (M2M) interactions. In addition to seamless connectivity, Qualcomm is focused on the ease of wearing these smart glasses. The Smart Visor powered by the Snapdragon XR2 platform is 40% slimmer than the older reference design powered by the XR1 platform.

As expected, consumers won’t be able to buy any devices based on Qualcomm’s reference design anytime soon. The commercial product is the Oppo Air Glass, which offers AR experiences through a lightweight monocle form factor and independent processing capabilities, powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Wear 4100 platform.

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