It was at the Snapdragon Summit 2022 that Qualcomm just launched its new high-end SoC, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2.
Qualcomm’s annual event takes place earlier this year. You usually have to wait until the beginning of December to have the innovations that the founder of San Diego prepares for the coming year. This year, it’s mid-November, still in Hawaii, that Qualcomm has just announced its new SoC for high-end and premium smartphones in 2023. No wonder, here is the successor to Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 which is none other than Snapdragon 8 Gen 2.
A little throwback to last year’s announcement where Qualcomm decided to change the references of its SoCs from three digits to one. So get out the 865 and 888 for Series 8. And of course, by extension, Series 7, Series 6 and Series 4 depending on positioning. We also remind you that Qualcomm now communicates much more about the Snapdragon brand and no longer Qualcomm Snapdragon.
All these changes were not made innocently, but were part of a strategy to better prepare against competition and to be more competitive in the eyes of the general public. We do not forget that the competition at Apple is now called M2 and at Google it is Sensor G2.
Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, the new top of the range
Well, we agree, it’s not super original and predictable as Qualcomm’s new SoC is none other than the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 and it succeeds the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1. Since we’re in 2022, most of the effort of The American giant is structured around artificial intelligence. Partner manufacturers are already out and we can count new products from the following brands: Asus Republic of Gamers, Honor, iQoo, Motorola, nubia, OnePlus, Oppo, RedMagic, Redmi, Sharp, Sony, vivo, Xiaomi, Meizu or ZTE .
Moreover, to our great surprise, the first models will not arrive next year, but by the end of this year (probably in China, we are not carried away). Now, to be honest, the sheer power of the current generation far exceeds our daily needs. The advantage with more power is that developers will be able to offer us much more in terms of experience. All that’s left to do is wait.
“We are happy to bring our users even more options. We developed Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 with users at the center, and the new Snapdragon will revolutionize flagship smartphones in 2023,” said Chris Patrick, Senior Vice President of Mobile.
What’s new in Snapdragon 8 Gen 2
In recent years, innovations have started with Artificial Intelligence. Also, this year, Qualcomm’s AI engine is getting a name, Snapdragon Smart. It is the 8th generation of Qualcomm’s AI engine which integrates a new Hexagon processor which allows AI performance up to 4.35 times more than the previous generation, which is already 4 times more efficient than the previous generation. But that is not all as it is the first time that Qualcomm supports INT4 and therefore, it is the first time in a mobile device. Simply put, because it’s still super technical, it allows you to process even more information.
Another important and not negligible sector for a high-end and premium smartphone is photography and video. Also, Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 introduces the Snapdragon Sight platform which integrates a host of technologies in order to deliver the best possible photos. We start with semantic recognition which uses AI to contextualize the scene. Suddenly, Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is able to independently recognize faces, hair, clothes, the sky and much more. Suddenly, with such knowledge, each element can be optimized separately. This promises a real breakthrough in the world of photography, especially with the partnership with Adobe.
Who says new SoC also means support for new sensor sizes up to one inch. But that’s not all, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is able to support Sony’s new Quad Digital Overlap HDR technology or the brand new Samsung ISOCELL HP3 200 Megapixel sensor. Added to this are the first photo sensors developed specifically for the Snapdragon SoC. And finally, that’s not all as the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is also the first Snapdragon to integrate the AV1 codec which allows content playback in 8K HDR at 60fps. impressive.
We have seen for some time, sound has become an important part of a smartphone and without surprises, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is no exception to the rule with the Snapdragon Sound platform which integrates support for surround sound, spatial sound with head tracking. , “lossless” content streaming at 48kHz and an estimated latency of just 48ms.
And finally, we finish with the gaming part with the in-house platform, Snapdragon Elite Gaming, which is still evolving with real-time Ray-Tracing. Yes, we are talking about Ray-Tracing on a smartphone! Qualcomm announces that Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is the first SoC optimized for Unreal Engine 5. The new Adreno GPU thus offers 25% more performance with 40% more efficiency in energy consumption.
And who says the games also say the network, and if we definitely find the new Snapdragon X70 5G modem which allows the use of AI to better connect speed, latency or even power consumption, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 allows you to use two 4G/ 5G/ SIM 5G+ simultaneously. And in the end yes, we also have WiFi 7 support, we didn’t even have time to get used to WiFi 6 and WiFi 6e that we are switching to WiFi 7. FYI, WiFi 7 is twice as fast as WiFi 6 .
Adobe, partner of choice for Qualcomm
As mentioned above, Qualcomm is targeting the mobility market in general. Also, the competition for the American founder is more similar to Apple Silicon M1 and M2 from Apple for example than the Axx Bionic SoC found on the iPhone. Therefore, Qualcomm will continue to develop for smartphones, but also for PCs. Also, it was during this Snapdragon Summit that Qualcomm has just announced that it will continue its partnership with Adobe in order to bring Adobe Fresco and Adobe Acrobat natively to Windows PCs with a Snapdragon SoC.
This is not new in absolute terms as Adobe had already ported Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Lightroom before. The partnership is not limited to bringing its applications to devices using Snapdragon, but the publisher will help the founder develop Virtual Reality, Mixed Reality and Augmented Reality projects.
“Snapdragon continues to deliver premium experiences across multiple categories, always with the end user at the center to enable them to get the most out of their creations across their devices,” said Alex Katouzian, SVP & GM, MCX, Qualcomm Technologies . “Together with Adobe, we will bring the world’s most advanced creative tools to Snapdragon-powered devices to create the experiences of tomorrow. »