888, no we are not talking about the Angel number here, it’s the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888, the upcoming flagship chipset by the company dominant in the Android segment. On the first day of Qualcomm Tech Summit Digital, Qualcomm Technologies announced its portfolio for upcoming quarters, with the major announcement of its next flagship processor from Qualcomm Snapdragon 8-Series. The Snapdragon 888, will be the company’s best 5G chipset with the most advanced AI and Image Processing capabilities.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 will feature the 3rd gen X60 5G Modem, the latest by Qualcomm. It supports all the latest connectivity technologies like mmWave, sub-6, Dynamic Spectrum Sharing, Carrier Aggregation on 5G, and more. The new modem will offer download speeds faster than anyone’s expectations, as quoted by Qualcomm.
The chipset will be fabricated on a 5nm architecture, the first for Qualcomm as compared to 7nm on the current 865. The new Snapdragon 888 chipset will have the 6th gen Qualcomm AI Engine, capable of 26TOPS. Found these terms confusing? Allow us to simplify them for you.
AI uses a vast set of permutations and combinations, which is basically prediction based on a large database that is pre-recorded. When the user provides an input to the processor, the chipset conducts trillions of operations per second, running all possibilities to come with the desired output. This is what we call, TOPS – Trillion Operations Per Second. The higher the number, the more powerful is the chipset. The 26 TOPS value on the Snapdragon 888 means it can conduct 26 trillion operations per second, after receiving an input from the user, which is almost doubled as compared to 15 TOPS on the Snapdragon 865.
The new chipset will also feature the most powerful mobile GPU ever, from Adreno. Exact details about the GPU were not released by Qualcomm, but given the track record, it will surely set new benchmarks in the Android segment. The Snapdragon 888 van delivers frame rates of 144fps, which means that displays with 144Hz refresh rates are something which we can see in upcoming times from smartphone manufacturers. Qualcomm aims to narrow the gap between Mobile Gaming and PC Gaming with its new Updatable GPU drivers and Desktop Forward Rendering.
Qualcomm also focused a lot on image processing with the new chipset. The Snapdragon 888 will sport the Qualcomm Spectra ISP which can capture 2.7 gigapixels per second. Again confusing? Don’t worry, we are here for you!
To put that into perspective, the new ISP (Image Signalling Processor) can capture 120 images in a second, at a resolution of 12MP each. This makes the new chipset 35% faster than all existing mobile processors. Now that’s very fast, and smartphone manufacturers can use this potential to implement 120fps videos on phones with sharp resolution, not a reduced resolution which we see on slow-motion videos on current phones.
That’s just the chipset information, and now the actual implementation of these features will depend on OEMs. So who’s going to get it first? Samsung, OnePlus, Xiaomi, Realme, OPPO, who? Well, everyone’s a strong contender here. Xiaomi has even officially announced the Mi 11 with Snapdragon 888, which will launch next year. Other devices that we can confidently say will feature the Snapdragon 888 has to be the OnePlus 9 Pro, ROG Phone 4, and few others.
Realme recently made claims of ‘Realme-Race’, so is this a hint that they will try to win the Snapdragon 888 race with a new smartphone? Well, we can’t answer that as of now! All Tier-1 brands are equal contenders for the chipset, and even we are eager to see the first phone with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 SoC.