Published: Fri, December 06, 2019
Electronics | By Kelly Massey

Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 865 chipset promises 5G, enhanced camera and more

Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 865 chipset promises 5G, enhanced camera and more

Yesterday at its annual tech summit, Qualcomm announced the name of its next flagship mobile processor-the Snapdragon 865-and now today, we're finally getting a bit more detail on all the new improvements and features Qualcomm packed into its shiny new chip. That's in part by design, of course: Qualcomm says that its goal is to focus on the use-cases rather than the technology that's powering it. Its Snapdragon X55 5G Modem-RF System is the world's first commercial modem-to-antenna 5G solution for consistent, lightning-fast speeds across the board-with peak speeds of up to 7.5 Gbps.

Higher-end devices may be able to take advantage of mmWave and sub-6GHz 5G, while there's a possibility that Apple's more affordable devices will be limited to the sub-6GHz networks. But with the 865, 5G support is effectively required now. And keep playing games that are released as Qualcomm would adapt the Snapdragon 865 drivers to them.

In recent times, the Snapdragon 865 had made a big play for camera improvements. Snapdragon 865 includes the blazing fast Qualcomm Spectra 480 Image Signal Processor (ISP), which brings new features to mobile photography and videography thanks to gigapixel speeds - up to 2 gigapixels per second. The chipset can capture in 4K HDR, 8K video or click images in 200-megapixel photos.

In those instances, you'll have to rely on the other benefits Qualcomm is touting with its latest mobile processor.

In addition to that, Xiaomi has just announced that the K30 series will feature the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 765 chipset, including the 765G.

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We have more than two months before the suspected Galaxy S11 launch, so there's more time for leaks and rumors to further our understanding of Samsung's new smartphone.

For the Snapdragon 865, you'll be able to update the Adreno 650 GPU via Google Play, in the exact same way as you'd update any other app on your phone. Similarly, the Reno Ace, which is run by the Snapdragon 855 Plus, favoured particularly well with the public due to its cutting-edge camera and great performance. Qualcomm says that the fifth-generation Qualcomm AI Engine on the 865 is twice as powerful as the fourth-gen engine on last year's chipset, while offering 35 percent better power efficiency.

The new Qualcomm Snapdragon 865SoC will have enhanced capabilities to support the latest camera functions.

Like with numerous improvements here, it'll rely on device manufacturers and software developers building hardware and apps that can take advantage of the AI-powered potential of the 865. And the Snapdragon 865 will power many Android flagships, starting with the Galaxy S11, which should launch in February and all the way through October 2020, when the Pixel 5 will be unveiled.

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