At its 4G/5G Summit in Hong Kong on Monday, Qualcomm Technologies announced the launch of three new Snapdragon SoCs. For mid-range smartphones and tablets, the company launched two chips in the Snapdragon 600 series – the Snapdragon 653 and the Snapdragon 626. For high-volume smartphones and tablets, Qualcomm has unveiled the Snapdragon 427.
All three new SoCs are minor upgrades over their predecessors that are meant to provide network flexibility with the introduction of a new modem, and ease of implementation to OEMs by maintaining pin and software compatibility with previous generation chipsets.
Qualcomm has also brought dual camera support to the three SoCs, a feature extended for the first time beyond the Snapdragon 800 family to the Snapdragon 600 and Snapdragon 400 families. All three new Snapdragon SoCs sport the Hexagon DSP, the Snapdragon X9 LTE modem, and also support Quick Charge 3.0. With the new modem, all three new SoCs also support LTE-A carrier aggregation (2x20MHz) with up to 300Mbps peak download speeds (LTE Cat. 7) and 150Mbps peak upload speeds (LTE Cat. 13), as well as 64-QAM modulation in the uplink. The three SoCs also support enhanced voice services (EVS) codes for Ultra HD VoLTE calls.
The Snapdragon 653 and Snapdragon 626 are slightly more powerful versions of the Snapdragon 652 and Snapdragon 625 SoCs respectively, and will be seen in their first commercial devices by the end of the year. The Snapdragon 427, an upgrade on the Snapdragon 425, on the other hand will be available in its first devices in Q1 2017.
The octa-core Snapdragon 653 is said to offer up to 10 percent higher CPU performance than the Snapdragon 652 SoC, apart from an increase in GPU performance, and also supports up to twice the addressable memory – up to 8GB.
Qualcomm says the octa-core Snapdragon 626 SoC offers up to 10 percent higher performance than the Snapdragon 625 SoC, and comes with its TruSignal antenna boost technology for what the company claims will provide improved signal reception in congested areas.
Finally, Qualcomm says the quad-core Snapdragon 427 SoC delivers both a CPU and GPU performance increase over the Snapdragon 425. With the integration of the X9 LTE modem, the Snapdragon 427 gets TruSignal antenna boost technology, making it the first chipset in the Snapdragon 400 series to get the capability.
Introducing the new SoCs, Alex Katouzian, Senior Vice President of Product Management, Qualcomm Technologies, said, "It has always been Qualcomm Technologies' strategy to introduce industry-leading features first at the premium Snapdragon 800 tier design point, and then scale these features into our other Snapdragon products. A great example of this strategy is the use of dual camera for capturing high quality photos that now range across our portfolio, including our 400 series mobile solution. Doing this allows our customers and smartphone developers to reach a broad subscriber base with advanced features and great end-user experiences."
Disclosure: The correspondent's flights and hotel for the summit in Hong Kong were sponsored by Qualcomm.