While Apple stayed true to its roots and launched their new ARM-based processors in a fancy event making quite a lot of headlines in the process, Qualcomm was breaking ground somewhere else.
Qualcomm has released its highest-end mobile platform for the year 2021, and there is a lot to be excited about. Although this news only marks the availability of the stunning new chipset with the bleeding edge 5nm architecture, it won’t be long till we get to see them packed up in neat little glass sandwiches that can readily outperform any 2020 flagship.
Admittedly, such a bewildering performance boost requires quite a complex piece of silicon. So without getting into the gritty details about the chip, we’ll be talking more about what difference it will make in real-life usage.
Better Power efficiency
The major advantage that the SD 888 has over the SD 865 from last year is that they took the 7nm nodes down to 5nm nodes, which directly translates to better transistor density. Meaning, the components on the chip are now even smaller, and more components can be integrated into the same amount of space. This new development also provides better power efficiency. It’s pretty simple actually — smaller components consume less power.
with the new architecture, the 2021 Snapdragon flagship also features a more efficient Arm Cortex-A78 CPU and revamped machine learning processors. All in all, the SD 888 is the most powerful yet most power-efficient SOC from Qualcomm to date.
With great power comes great graphic gains. The 5 nm silicon boasts 35% more graphics performance with 20% better efficiency. In other words, the chips go from stuttery mid-40 frames per second while gaming to a buttery smooth 60fps, 90fps, or even 120fps in day to day tasks.
That’s not all, the SD 888 also features10-bit HDR graphics, forward rendering,144fps refresh rates augmented with new Variable Rate Shading engine support, Qualcomm Game Quick Touch for lower input latency, and display features like sub-pixel rendering for smoother looking images. Features you would otherwise find in gaming consoles by the likes of Play Stations and X-Boxes.
As of 2020, 5G connectivity is all the rage. The blazing-fast speeds come with a whole range of use cases including superb AR and VR possibilities.
And with the dawn of 2021 on the horizon, Qualcomm has taken it a step further and baked their 5G modems into the SD 888 chipset itself. Prior to SD 888, Qualcomm like other manufacturers used an external modem that occupied extra space within the already congested smartphone chassis.
Not only will there be extra space for other bits and pieces once the SD 888 is on-board, but an integrated modem will also ensure lower data loss and latency while you enjoy the same data speeds.
Not just that seems to be the theme of this chipset, as it also enables manufacturers to use the latest dual-radio Bluetooth 5.2 connectivity capable of sustaining more than one data stream that directly translates to better stereo performance over Bluetooth.
We saved the best for last! Though the other features might get gamers and geeks excited, this one will definitely have a more mainstream appeal. The SD 888 has accounted for the fact that most flagship smartphones these days come with three or more camera sensors on the back and went from two to three image processing units for a whopping 2.7 gigapixels per second of processing power, meaning that the Snapdragon 888 can now simultaneously process image and video from three cameras.
What good does that do, you ask?
Well first off, you could take photos and videos at three different exposures such that the smartphone has a lot of data to work with. In short, the photos shot on this new chipset have the potential to have the best dynamic range ever seen on smartphones.
All that is awesome, yes. But 2021 is going to be very different than what we have been used to seeing in smartphone performance.In the last few years, a flagship phone, most of the time, meant a good overall hardware package paired with the latest highest-end Snapdragon, at least on the Android front.
Not this year – this year, besides Qualcomm, Samsung, Huawei, Google, and Apple will be making their own SOCs. Huawei and Apple make sense, but we’re excited about what Samsung and Google are planning. If they need to go through the trouble of making their own hardware, they must be planning something special, right?
We guess only time will tell. We can’t wait for this year to be over!