Qualcomm sheds last veil from Snapdragon 820

Hopes that 2015 was just a bad dream


After letting the world in on glimpses of its Snapdragon 820 processor for a few months, Qualcomm has finally taken the lamp out of the basket.

The company will have high hopes for the chip: troubles in China, being jilted by Samsung, and talk of overheating in its Snapdragon 810 chips left it with disappointing revenue and profitability in its 2015 financials.

The company had already revealed the Snapdragon 820's DSP, and promised carrier aggregation and LTE-U support in the chip.

With the official launch, the company's promising LTE downloads up to 450 Mbps, and Wi-Fi gets 2 x 2 MIMO for 802.11ac and 802.11ad.

It claims a doubling of processing power compared to the Snapdragon 810, with a 40 per cent graphics boost coming from its Adreno 530 GPU (compared to the predecessor Adreno 430).

The processor supports cameras up to 28 megapixels and video capture and playback all the way to 4K Ultra HD.

The chip-designer also wants to make it easier to deal with your photo collections: the Snapdragon 820 can be “trained” to categorise photos with less user intervention and discard dud pics (a feature called Scene Detect), and a low light vision (LLV) feature helps get rid of the noise that can ruin low-light shots.

Battery management also gets attention in the release, with Quick Charge 3.0 claiming a four-times speed improvement over conventional charging and a boost of 38 per cent compared to Quick Charge 2.0. ®


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