Qualcomm Debuts 28nm Snapdragon, Powerful Mobile GPU
Qualcomm has introduced its next generation of smartphone systems-on-chip based on 28nm fabrication technology, as well as an advanced mobile GPU said to rival the graphics processing power of modern living room gaming consoles. Debuted at the company’s Analyst Day in New York City earlier today, the so-called MSM8960 promises five times the performance of first generation QSD8x50 1GHz Snapdragon chipsets, while at the same time lowering power consumption by an alleged 75%. While the chipsets will contain two processing cores, Qualcomm has yet to reveal their clock speeds; we do know that the company has previously announced 1.2GHz and 1.5GHz dual-core chips, although those are still based on 45nm architecture.
Even more exciting were claims made about the GPU to be included in these chipsets, the Adreno 300-series, which boasts four times the performance of Adreno 100-series chips. Where the latter models were said to deliver gaming on par with portable consoles like Sony’s PSP and the Nintendo DS, and the Adreno 200-series raised the bar to PS2- and Wii-like levels, Adreno 300 GPU’s will allegedly enable graphics performance similar to powerful consoles like the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
Additionally, MSM8960 contains a multi-mode modem, allowing it to support LTE data networks along with the usual EV-DO and HSPA 3G standards. AnandTech notes that since these components will only begin sampling next year, we probably can’t expect them to ship in products until sometime in 2012. By that time there will be plenty of competition on the market, with dual-core ARM Cortex A9-based processors such as Nvidia’s Tegra 2, Samsung’s Orion, and Texas Instruments’ OMAP4 right around the corner as well.