Although 5G is the next wave for mobile connectivity, Qualcomm has announced three new chipsets that offer fast connectivity via 4G. These are the Snapdragon 720G, 662 and 460.
According to Qualcomm, 4G will still continue to remain a focus area especially for regions like India as it is still a crucial medium to stay connected. They added that the expansion of its 4G lineup will enable smartphone makers to meet global demand and enable great gaming experiences across different price segments.
The Snapdragon 720G is their upper mid-range offering that’s positioned right below the Snapdragon 765. Since it has “G” in the name, it has Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Elite Gaming features which offer smooth HDR gameplay, dynamic colour range and contrast, and synchronised sound with Qualcomm aptX Adaptive.
The chipset which is manufactured based on an 8nm process, uses Kryo 465 CPU cores that are clocked up to 2.3GHz. It also features an Adreno 618 GPU and a Qualcomm Spectra 350L Image Signal Processor that can support up to 192MP image capture and 4K videos at 30fps. Also included is Qualcomm’s 5th gen AI engine which will enable new AI experiences for gaming, photography, voice assistance and always-on contextual awareness.
For connectivity, it uses Snapdragon X15 LTE modem that can deliver 4G LTE Cat 15 speeds of up to 800Mbps. It supports 3 carrier aggregation, with up to 256-QAM and 4×4 MIMO. Utilising the FastConect 6200 subsystem, it also supports Dual SIM Dual-VoLTE as well as WiFi calling with call continuity between LTE and WiFi.
The Snapdragon 720G platform is also 802.11ax-ready (WiFi 6) and it supports Bluetooth version 5.1. For fast charging, it supports Quick Charge 4 technology. The 720G is expected to be available commercially in Q1 2020.
Hitting the mid-point is the Snapdragon 662 which brings AI capabilities for the first time for Qualcomm’s 6-series with its 3rd gen AI Engine. The octa-core chip is manufactured based on an 11nm process and it utilises Qualcomm’s Kryo 260 CPU that’s clocked up to 2GHz. The 662 comes with an Adreno 610 GPU
Similar to the Snapdragon 720G, it is WiFi 6 ready and it supports Bluetooth 5.1 connectivity. However, when it comes to 4G, it uses a Snapdragon X11 LTE modem that pushes LTE Cat 13 speeds of up to 390Mbps via carrier aggregation. On top of that, the Snapdragon 662 also supports fast charging via Quick Charge 3.
The most affordable of the lot is the Snapdragon 460 which promises to deliver a boost in connectivity, AI and camera performance compared to its current Snapdragon 450. This is the first 11nm octa-core chip under the 4-series and it runs on Qualcomm’s Kryo 240 CPU cores that are locked up to 1.8GHz. Qualcomm claims that the 460 offers a 70% boost in CPU and 60% boost in GPU compared to its previous generation. It also shares the same Adreno 610 GPU and Snapdragon X11 LTE modem as the Snapdragon 662.
Although it is designed for entry-level smartphones, the 460 also WiFi 6 ready and it supports Bluetooth 5.1 and 4G LTE Cat 13 speeds of up to 390Mbps. Both the Snapdragon 460 and 662 will be commercially available by the end of 2020.
Both Xiaomi and Realme will be one of the first smartphone makers to utilise the new Snapdragon 720G chipset. The new Snapdragon trio will also support dual-frequency (L1 and L5) GNSS as well as India’s NavIC GPS system.
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