Qualcomm has today launched its first SoC in the Snapdragon 6xx series that offers 5G support – the Snapdragon 690. The new Qualcomm chip is targeted at the affordable smartphone segment ($300-$500 range), and also brings a lot of other firsts for Snapdragon 600 series chip such as support for 120Hz display, complete with HDR10 and HDR10+ playback.

Additionally, it is also the first in the series to offer 4K HDR video capture capability, the first to use a fresh CPU architecture employing the new Cortex-A77 design, and also the first to come with Qualcomm’s 5th Gen Qualcomm AI Engine. Additionally, the upgraded imaging sensor will allow phones powered by it to capture shots of up to 192MP resolution, while slo-mo video capture is capped at 240FPS and 720p resolution.

The octa-core SoC employs Kryo 560 cores clocked at up to 2.0GHz and can be paired alongside up to 8GB of LPDDR4X RAM. The Snapdragon X51 5G Modem-RF System facilitates dual-mode 5G (SA+NSA) connectivity with global 5G and multi-SIM 5G compatibility, and Wi-Fi 6 support is on the table as well.

So far, HMD Global, LG Electronics, Motorola, SHARP, TCL, and Wingtech are the brands that have announced plans to use the Snapdragon 690 in their upcoming phones. Qualcomm says the first wave of phones powered by its new 5G-ready SoC will arrive in the first half of 2020 in markets such as Europe and North America. Unfortunately, as of now, there is no clarity on the position of Chinese smartphone makers such as Xiaomi, OPPO, Vivo, and Realme using the new Qualcomm offering.

CPUOcta-core Kryo 560
Up to 2.0 GHz
64-bit Architecture
Part NumberSM6350
CameraQualcomm Spectra 355L Image Signal Processor
Up to 192 MP snapshot capture
Up to 32+16 MP dual camera @ 30 FPS with ZSL
Slow-mo video capture at 720p @ 240 FPS
4K HDR Video Capture with Portrait Mode
HDR10 and HLG video capture format
GPUAdreno 619L
4K HDR10 PQ and HLG Video playback
H.264 (AVC), H.265 (HEVC) VP8 and VP9 playback
OpenGL ES 3.2, OpenCL 2.0 FP, Vulkan 1.1, DirectX 12
Biometric AuthenticationFingerprint, Iris, Voice, Face
ChargingQuick Charge 4+ technology
LocationGPS, Glonass, BeiDou, Galileo, QZSS, NavIC, and SBAS
Dual Frequency support
MemoryUp to 8GB LPDDR4x
DisplayMaximum FHD+ @ 120 Hz
10-bit color depth, Rec. 2020 color gamut
HDR10 and HDR10+
Wi-FiWi-Fi 6-ready (802.11ax/ac/a/b/g/n
5G Modem-RF SystemSnapdragon X51 5G Modem-RF System
5G standalone (SA) and non-standalone (NSA) modes,
Dynamic Spectrum Sharing
Global 5G multi-SIM
Downlink up to 2.5 Gbps (5G), 1.2 Gbps (LTE)
Uplink up to 660 Mbps (5G), 210 Mbps (LTE)
I’ve been writing about consumer technology for over three years now, having worked with names such as NDTV and Beebom in the past. Aside from covering the latest news, I’ve reviewed my fair share of devices ranging from smartphones and laptops to smart home devices. I also have interviewed tech execs and appeared as a host in YouTube videos talking about the latest and greatest gadgets out there.
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