Qualcomm has announced its next-generation flagship processor, the Snapdragon 888, that will be powering the high-end smartphone segment in 2021. The chipset was announced during the ongoing Qualcomm Snapdragon Tech Summit 2020 which is the company’s annual showcase for next-generation mobile platforms and technologies.
The new chip is the successor to the Snapdragon 865 chipset that we saw in almost every major flagship and premium-tier smartphone this year. The Snapdragon 888 is fabricated on a 5nm process which indicates significant gains in performance and power efficiency over the 865 which was manufactured on a 7nm process.
During the announcement, Xiaomi founder Lei Jun took to the stage to announce that the Mi 11 will be one of the first smartphones to be powered by the Snapdragon 888 processor.
“Snapdragon 888 is the most powerful mobile platform from Qualcomm Technologies ever. In addition to the industry-leading 5G connectivity, it has brought groundbreaking breakthroughs and innovations in AI, gaming, and camera. I’m glad that our new flagship smartphone Mi11 will be one of the first devices with Snapdragon 888. This is another cutting-edge product from us and will be loaded with various hardcore technologies,” he said.
How is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 different from the Snapdragon 865?
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 features a third-generation Qualcomm Snapdragon X60 5G modem that succeeds the X55 and brings worldwide compatibility with mmWave and sub-6 across all major bands, 5G carrier aggregation, global multi-SIM and more.
With the new sixth-generation Qualcomm AI Engine, the chip has made advancements to improve performance and power efficiency by delivering 26 TOPS (tera operations per second) in comparison to 15 TOPS on the Snapdragon 865. It also features the second generation Qualcomm Sensing Hub that allows low-power always-on AI processes to function for AI-based features.
Qualcomm claims that with the Snapdragon 888, it has tripled down on computation photography intending to “transform smartphones into professional-quality cameras”. The chipset is home to the new Qualcomm Spectra ISP that can capture photos and videos at 2.7 gigapixels per second and is touted to be 35% faster than the Spectra 480 ISP.
The Snapdragon 888 also brings third-generation Qualcomm Snapdragon Elite Gaming features. The previous generation of Snapdragon Elite Gaming introduced updatable GPU drivers, support for up to 144Hz refresh rate display and more. Qualcomm will be detailing the new chipset on the second day of the Snapdragon Tech Summit 2020, and we will update this story as and when those details are revealed.