Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 will bring advanced features to 2019 5G phones

James Marshall
December 5, 2018

Therefore, in theory, the Snapdragon 855 could be quite a bit faster than the A12 Bionic, but that remains to be seen when devices with it ship in the first half of 2019. The report from late November says the phone will feature the Snapdragon 8150, which was a rumored codename for the chipset we now know to be the Snapdragon 855. (It's unclear if this pattern will continue with the S10.) Samsung is at the Qualcomm Snapdragon Tech Summit 2019 where the Snapdragon 855 has been unveiled, which we're taking that to mean the company is nearly certain to include the new Snapdragon on its next flagship.

Devices with Snapdragon 855 should also see a significant improvement in computational photography thanks to the new Spectra 380 image signal processor (ISP), which will include computer vision capabilities.

It's been clear for a while now that 2019 will be the year of 5G, and it's little surprise at this point that the Snapdragon 855 will support "multi-gigabit" data speeds on 5G networks as they light up around the country.

Aside from the new flagship class Snapdragon 855 chip, Qualcomm has also announced another new product at its Snapdragon Tech Summit 2018 in the form of 3D Sonic Sensor.


Another feature the Snapdragon 855 can tap into is Qualcomm's 3D Sonic Sensor.

Qualcomm designs the mobile processors used in most high-end Android smartphones.

AT&T and Verizon both have 5G networks set up in the hotel where the Qualcomm event is taking place, and using a reference device shown off on stage during the keynote, those in attendance will get to experience a 5G connection on a reference smartphone powered by the Snapdragon 855 platform. The energy efficiency ratio of the Snapdragon 855 will be more prominent. The sensor takes a full 3D image of the fingerprint unique to you, better than an optical solution. Qualcomm officially announced the new processor at its conference in Hawaii on Tuesday.

Katouzian also said Qualcomm's updated AI engine should outpace what rival chipmakers are doing with artificial intelligence, promising a 2x improvement over the Kirin 980. Apple has never been first when it comes to integrating new network technology in the iPhone, waiting for others to work out the initial issues such as battery life and overall impact on daily use. That will let the ISP adjust camera parameters to capture a better shot. Snapdragon Elite Gaming, which includes Qualcomm working with top gaming companies to tune the Snapdragon mobile gaming experience. Mobile games are getting more demanding, so we'd expect this feature to help support the kind of graphically intense offerings that app makers are churning out with minimal lag.

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