All you need to know about Qualcomm’s newest Snapdragons

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NVIDIAs newest SoC, the Tegra K1, made waves at CES 2014 when it was announced to have 192 cores! Alas, they’re graphics cores, not processor cores.

Another chip maker has some news out of CES as well! What does Qualcomm has in store for us in 2014? What cool new things can its chips do? Here’s all you need to know about Qualcomm’s newest Snapdragons: the 410, 602A, 802, and 805.

Here’s a hint: TVs, cars, and 64-bit are on their way!

Smart Cars

smart automotive

Qualcomm’s mid-range Snapdragon 600 powers some of this year’s older phones, such as the HTC One. However, since the 600 isn’t the highest-end chip that Qualcomm offers, devices powered by the chip often didn’t get the attention they deserved. The Snapdragon 600 is a great chip! At CES 2014 Qualcomm set out to show us just how great it is by giving it a little bit of a boost — and putting it in your car.

The Snapdragon 602A is specifically designed for automotive use. That sounds pretty boring — but it’s not. The SoC will offer 802.11ac WiFi (with both 2.4 and 5GHz radios), Bluetooth LE 4.0, a multimode 3G/4G-LTE modem, and an Adreno 320 graphics processor. With all that power, hands-free technology should get a major boost, and Qualcomm says support for multiple types of gesture and voice recognition are on the way.

While cars aren’t what we’d typically include when we’re talking about smartphones and tablets, I suppose they technically still are “mobile” technologies. Unlike NVIDIA, Qualcomm hasn’t announced any vehicle partners yet.

Smart TVs

smart TV

The Snapdragon 802 takes aim at smart TVs rather than phones and tablets. That’s okay by me, since it targets the next generation of smart TVs and 4K displays. I don’t know about you, but I hope 4K takes a while before it finally lands on our 5-inch smartphones.

Qualcomm expects TVs with the Snapdragon 802 to debut by the end of 2014.

What’s Next?

Snapdragon

That’s what we got to see from Qualcomm at this year’s CES expo, but what about smartphones and tablets? We’ve already heard a little about Qualcomm’s next, high-end SoC, the Snapdragon 805. This chip is essentially a Snapdragon 800 with some extra graphics abilities for UHD displays thrown in.

That doesn’t really do the 805 justice, so, to put it another way, both the 802 and the 805 can stream multiple 1080p videos at the same time. I know, why would you do that?  To put it into practical terms, you could participate in an HD video conference on one part of your screen while playing a game or watching a video in another part. Impressive!

That just leaves the entry-level SoC: the Snapdragon 400. Its upgrade will reported be to the new 410. It should be able to run DX11 graphics and will reportedly use a new 20nm ARM core. While we don’t know all that much about the Snapdragon 410 at this point, we do know that it will be a 64-bit processor, which should certainly turn some heads.

Both the Snapdragon 805 and 410 should be available in products later this year.

Predictions

qualcomm-snapdragon-800

Looking at the numbering scheme, it seems like the 00’s are the 2013 models that we already know about. The x02’s are for devices like TVs and cars. The 05’s are the 2014 models with enhancements for UHD and 4K displays, and the 10’s could be the 64-bit versions of the chips.

None of that is official that we can tell, but the numbering scheme seems pretty clear to us. Now, who wants a 64-bit Snapdragon 810 in their next smartphone?

New chips are just one of the things coming out of CES 2014. We’ve got lots more coverage from the show floor, excellent articles by the support staff, and don’t miss Jaime’s daily video updates! As you’ve come to expect, Pocketnow has you covered!

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About The Author
Joe Levi
Joe graduated from Weber State University with two degrees in Information Systems and Technologies. He has carried mobile devices with him for more than a decade, including Apple's Newton, Microsoft's Handheld and Palm Sized PCs, and is Pocketnow's "Android Guy".By day you'll find Joe coding web pages, tweaking for SEO, and leveraging social media to spread the word. By night you'll probably find him writing technology and "prepping" articles, as well as shooting video.Read more about Joe Levi here.