The processors come with innovations that improve on raw performance, image processing and AI capabilities
American chipset maker Qualcomm on Tuesday announced three new mobile platforms in its Snapdragon range of processors — Snapdragon 665, 730, 730G. Qualcomm says these platforms are designed to exceed customer expectations on delivering exciting experiences in artificial intelligence (AI), gaming, camera, and performance.
What's a Snapdragon 6-series or 7-series processor?
Qualcomm uses a clear segmentation of smartphone chipsets (called Snapdragon) on the basis of smartphones they would be used in.
According to Qualcomm, Snapdragon 2-series processors are better suited for starter-level smartphones while 4-series processors are just a notch above 2-series processors (Qualcomm calls this the "basic level").
Processors in Snapdragon 6-series are better suited for mid-range smartphones while 7-series processors are suited for high-level smartphones.
The Snapdragon 8-series processors are used in top-of-the-line, flagship-level smartphones.
The Snapdragon 665 is a step up from its predecessor, Snapdragon 660, while the Snapdragon 730 succeeds the Snapdragon 710 and 712 processors.
The Snapdragon 730G is a gaming-focused variant of the 730 that offers faster graphics rendering, HDR gaming and other performance-enhancing features.
The Snapdragon 665 is an octa-core CPU based on an 11nm process. It has eight Kryo 260 cores (four performance, four efficiency) that can be clocked up to 2GHz. It is paired with an Adreno 610 GPU.
It incorporates a 3rd Gen Qualcomm AI Engine, Qualcomm Spectra 165 ISP (Image Signal Processor) and Qualcomm Hexagon 686 DSP (Digital Signal Processor).
Qualcomm says that the new AI engine offers up to 2X faster AI processing. The AI engine, combined with the new ISP also offers better AI scene recognition, AR text translation and portrait relighting. The chipset is now capable of supporting 4K video capture, 720p slo-mo video capture @240fps, 3D face unlock, multiple camera support (up to three cameras), multi-frame noise reduction and spatial noise processing. It can support sensors with up to 48 megapixels resolution. It also comes with an X12 LTE modem module capable of WiFi speeds up to 600 Mbps.
Support for Vulkan 1.1, a graphics library that integrates enhanced developer tools results in 20% less power than Open GL ES. This means it can offer better graphics and longer battery life while gaming.
The Snapdragon 730 is an octa-core processor based on an 8nm process. It is powered by eight Kryo 470 cores that can be clocked up to 2.2 GHz. It is paired with an Adreno 618 GPU with support for Vulkan 1.1. It can support up to 8GB RAM with speeds up to 1866 MHz.
It incorporates a 4th Gen Qualcomm AI Engine, Qualcomm Spectra 350 ISP and Qualcomm Hexagon 688 DSP, which also has an additional tensor accelerator unit which allows better speech recognition.
It comes with Qualcomm's X15 LTE modem module which is WiFi-6 ready. The Spectra 350 ISP allows recording of 4K HDR footage with "Portrait" mode, high-resolution depth sensing, MCTF video capture, HEIF file capture and playback. It can supports sensors with up to 48MP resolution and can click snapshots with really high resolution of 192MP by combining images from multiple sensors.
The Snapdragon 730G can be thought of as a regular Snapdragon 730 on steroids with an overclocked Adreno 618 GPU. It promises up to 15% faster graphics rendering over the Snapdragon 730 and comes with a Jank Reducer feature that reduces janks in games by up to 90% running at 30fps. It also has "Anti-Cheating Extensions" to help keep gamers on the same level playing field. It also has improvements in the camera pipeline, adding support for Cinemagraph, low power voice activation and HD super slow-mo at 960fps.
Qualcomm says the new chipsets would start rolling out by mid-2019.