Introduced in December 2019, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 chipset promises us not only another performance improvement, but also a new-generation GPU, improved energy efficiency, and even 8K video shooting. We tell you what else will bring a fresh chipset to this year's flagships.
Architecture that Improves Autonomy and Performance
The Snapdragon 865 is based on four Cortex-A77 cores made using 7 nm technology. The most powerful one runs at 2.85 GHz and has 512 KB of L2 cache memory. The system also has three high-performance cores with a frequency of 2.4 GHz and 256 KB of memory. In addition, the 865th "dragon" has four energy-efficient cores based on the Cortex-A55 architecture with a frequency of 1.8 GHz and 128 KB of memory. Thanks to them, Qualcomm promises to increase performance and reduce energy consumption by 25%.
GPU updated via Google Play
As for games, the Snapdragon 865 can compete with the Adreno 650 video core. It functions 15 percent faster than the previous generation, but it consumes 35% less energy. Gamers will surely enjoy support for releases with console graphics that reveal the potential of displays with a resolution of QHD+, a refresh rate of 144 Hz and HDR 10. Also, for the first time for smartphones, the graphics core will receive updates directly from Google Play. As with a PC, this will allow you to quickly update your graphics drivers to improve performance.
New Generation AI
The performance of the Hexagon 698 neural network processor has increased 4 times (up to 15 TOPS), while its power consumption has decreased by 35%. In order to provide a higher data transfer rate within the system, support for LPDDR5 memory with a frequency of 2750 MHz was added. Phones on Snapdragon 865 can translate speech in real-time, and without using any online services. You can also recognize music in offline mode, instantly apply filters in apps like Snapchat or MSQRD, and do similar impressive tricks.
5G - yes, but with reservations
Although the mobile industry is slowly but surely moving towards integrated 5G modems, the Snapdragon 865 (like its predecessor) still requires an external module to work in fifth-generation networks. According to Qualcomm, this scheme will make it easier for smartphone manufacturers to integrate the Snapdragon X55 modem into their devices. Yes, Kirin 990, Exynos 990 and Snapdragon 765 have built-in 5G modems. However, all of them, to put it mildly, do not reach the data transfer rate in X55. Anyway, the Americans vow to release the next generation of the flagship SoC with an integrated modem - and this should happen in a year.
The main drawback of the external solution is increased power consumption, but Qualcomm deliberately took this step, betting on high performance. The X55 supports the widest possible range of frequencies, and the download/upload speed is 7.6/3 Gbit/s, respectively. However, such indicators can only be achieved in ideal conditions, which are almost impossible to find in real life today.
New camera features
The Qualcomm Spectra image processing coprocessor received a reduced clock rate to save power. But at the same time, by processing four pixels per clock cycle instead of one, the performance of the Spectra ISP was increased by 40%. As a result, Snapdragon 865 will allow you to equip smartphones with cameras at 200 MP, shoot 8K videos, create slow-motion clips in 720p at 960 fps without time limits, record video with Dolby Vision HDR and take 64-megapixel photos during video shooting.
In addition, they have improved the accuracy of computer vision, the speed of creating HDR data, scene detection, and the efficiency of noise reduction when shooting in low light conditions-all of these changes will not affect the power consumption of the Snapdragon 865.
Record-breaking performance, crazy photo opportunities, newly smarter AI, games with console-quality graphics - Snapdragon 865 will allow you to solve fundamentally new tasks that have not yet been set for phone manufacturers. The release of debut gadgets with the 865th chipset is expected in the first quarter of 2020.