What Qualcomm’s New Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 Means for Consumers

What Qualcomm’s New Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 Means for Consumers

A new tech advancement is hitting the shelves. Or rather, it is hitting mobile phones. Tech fans are eagerly awaiting its release and all the extra goodies that come with it. Take a look at our guide as we break down the new Snapdragon 8 Gen 1.

What is it?

It’s the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 of course!

Oh, that didn’t enlighten you? Well, the Snapdragon 8 is the newest flagship smartphone processor. For those that don’t like long words, that means it makes your phone work better.

For those who do like long words, there are a lot of hard specs to go through. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is the first Qualcomm chip to use its Armv9 architecture from Arm. It has an eight-core Kyro CPU with a single core based on the Cortex-X2 at 3.0GHz, along with three supporting performance cores which are based on Cortex-A710 at 2.5GHz, and four cores based on the Cortex-A510 design at 1.8GHz to help with efficiency. Plus, there is a jump from the Snapdragon 888’s 5nm process to 4nm process.

What does it mean in simple terms? Well, according to Qualcomm it means up to 30 per cent more power efficiency and up to 20 per cent better performance when compared to their last model.

Debuted on the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is the Snapdragon X65 modem, which is said to offer a range of 5G features. Qualcomm has built off of the existing mmWave and sub-6GHz compatibility that made their previous processors so good and added support that can handle 10 Gbps speeds and 3GPP Release 16 specifications. That kind of speed is otherwise unheard of around the world.

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What does it mean for your phone?  

Well, it means a lot of things. For one thing it will mean a lot faster loading screens. So, you can look up the most popular Chinese lucky charms for gambling at rapid speed. It will also mean a battery that will last longer, meaning less scrambling around for a wire that’s not frayed.

It also means that the new processor can handle Wi-Fi 6, Wi-Fi 6E, Bluetooth LE Audio, which is a first for Qualcomm and their Snapdragon Sound tech which enables AptX Lossless wireless audio.

As for the Snapdragon Sight brand, which encompasses all things camera, the processor upgrades things to an 18-bit system, rather than a 14-bit system that was on the Snapdragon 888, which means 4,096 times more camera data. What that really means is that you have options to shoot in very dark or very bright scenery, with the use of an extra four stops of dynamic range.

For the AI, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 makes use of Qualcomm’s latest Hexagon processor. This is its 7th gen AI engine, which is supposed to be up to 1.7 times more power efficient and four times faster.

Showed off amongst the AI uses was the improved camera functions, a Leica lens effects imitator if you’re a fan of lens flare, and antenna performance improved by detection of where you are holding your phone.

You will be able to make use of some optimal camera features offered by the Snapdragon processor, such as the ability to shoot in 8K video with HDR 10 plus and shooting in 18-bit RAW. There is a more efficient dark mode for photos, improved AI processing techniques, superior auto-focus, auto-exposure, and auto-face detection technology. Plus, a dedicated deep focus engine which can blur a background for a selfie in a 4K video and the ability to remove warps and aberrations from shots with a ultrawide engine.

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However, there are some concerns over the fourth ISP. The new ISP powers a camera that is always on, which Qualcomm says is designed to add security to your device, rather than remove it. It’s hard to argue that, but Qualcomm is saying that any data from the new camera is stored locally on your device and that users can opt-in to using it.

While we’re on security, beyond the concerns raised with a camera that is always on, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is said to add a new layer of security on the hardware level with its “dedicated Trust Management Engine”. This enables the use of digital car keys, and allows for replicas of driver’s licenses and IDs as well as supporting e-money wallets.

Android users can expect to hear the name Snapdragon soon, as the new upgrades hit the Android models. When compared with Google’s Tensor or Apple’s A-series, it isn’t breaking any boundaries, but makes for an improvement on what came before it.

Ayhan Fletcher

"Subtly charming zombie nerd. Infuriatingly humble thinker. Twitter enthusiast. Hardcore web junkie."

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