CES 2013: Qualcomm Unveils New Snapdragon Processors
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com – Your Universe Online
Qualcomm answered NVIDIA’s push last night during their own wild Vegas-style press event, announcing their new line of Snapdragon 800 and 600 processors. The numbers are impressive, as Qualcomm claims this new silicon will deliver up to 75% better performance than their existing chips. Like the Snapdragons that have gone before them, these chips will be developed with an eye towards mobile platforms, increasing the speed of smartphones and tablets, as well as working to deliver even higher-quality picture and video.
“With the overwhelming success of our previous Qualcomm Snapdragon platforms, our mobile processors have emerged as the platform of choice for high-end mobile devices,” said Steve Mollenkopf, president and chief operating officer of Qualcomm in a statement.
According to Mollenkopf, Qualcomm’s already had several nibbles from partners looking to install these new chips in their smartphones.
“With more than 50 design wins already secured with the first products of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 and 800 processors, we are advancing our vision and setting the standard for excellence in mobile computing,” Mollenkopf said.
Both the Snapdragon 600 and Snapdragon 800 will receive the quad-core treatments reaching speeds up to 2.3GHz. According to Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs, these new chips are even faster than some of the laptop CPUs currently available in the marketplace.
These new chips have been bulked up in order to take on some heavier loads.
The Snapdragon 800, for instance, gets its quad-core computing power from the Krait 400 CPU, but will also bear some 4G power, thanks to an on-board LTE Cat 4 modem. An Adreno 330 GPU and Hexagon v5 DSP (or digital signal processor) also help lend speed and smooth videos to devices. In fact, Jacobs claimed last night the Adreno and Hexagon duo act as an UltraHD engine that can capture, playback and display video at 4 times 1080p pixel density.
The less-powerful but no-less impressive Snapdragon 600 is expected before the 800, arriving before Q2 2013. The 800 processor could wind up in hot holiday gadgets for 2013.
Helping to make this event a particularly weird one was a sudden and surprise appearance by Microsoft’s CEO Steve Ballmer. Though Microsoft has famously stayed put in Washington for this year’s CES, Ballmer merrily ran on stage to talk about how exciting these new Qualcomm chips are and how powerful future Windows devices could be with them installed.
It’s Vegas, everyone. Expect the unexpected.