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Snapdragon 888 Delivers 26 TOPS

December 22, 2020

Author: Aakash Jani

Qualcomm’s next-generation Snapdragon 888 provides upgrades in every aspect, setting a high bar for premium smartphones. It delivers an industry-leading 26 TOPS for AI applications, and it offers a newly designed image signal processor (ISP) that captures data from three cameras in parallel. The new design is the first to employ the powerful Cortex-X1 CPU, extending the “prime core” concept. It also has a 35% faster GPU stuffed with new features that amplify the gaming experience.

Whereas the earlier Snapdragon 865 requires an external 5G-modem chip, the 888 integrates a Qualcomm X60 modem, offering a peak data rate of 7.5Gbps. It’s also the first premium smartphone processor to implement Wi-Fi 6E, which operates in the less trafficked 6GHz band. The 888’s increased power efficiency begins at the transistor level, as it is the industry’s first smartphone processor to take advantage of Samsung’s 5nm LP technology. Despite the faster transistors, Qualcomm maintained the same CPU frequencies, relying on per-clock-performance (IPC) boosts to drive the improvement.

The auspicious name thrice repeats a lucky number from Chinese culture, and the processor extends the premium Snapdragon 8xx tier. But by skipping 875, Qualcomm leaves only one more model number (perhaps 898) before it must begin a new numbering convention. By any name, the new chip reportedly powers the next-generation Samsung Galaxy S phones as well as flagship models from Vivo and others.

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