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article imageQualcomm announces Snapdragon 845 chip for next year's phones

By James Walker     Dec 7, 2017 in Technology
Qualcomm's officially unveiled its upcoming Snapdragon 845 processor, the chip set to power many of next year's top-tier Android devices. As expected, the company has moved to add new AI capabilities, increase power efficiency and improve raw performance.
The Snapdragon 845 is one of Qualcomm's most significant launches in recent years. The focus is on enabling the next generation of smartphones where features such as virtual reality and on-device AI are expected to be main selling points. Qualcomm's designed the processor package around these technologies, making them fundamental system components.
AI and XR
For its third-generation AI and XR platform, Qualcomm has added a new CPU and GPU architecture, upgraded AI image processing tech and expanded head-and-body movement tracking for immersive VR applications. According to the company, the design boosts neural network performance by as much as 300 percent. This makes on-device AI more versatile and unlocks new opportunities for developers.
Apps can run deep learning models from popular machine learning frameworks locally, cutting out the latency of cloud-based AI. Frameworks including Google's TensorFlow and Facebook's Caffe2 are supported, so developers can move many of their existing models straight onto Qualcomm's on-device AI solution.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
Virtual reality consumers will also benefit from a Snapdragon 845-equipped phone. Qualcomm's engineered a new graphics solution and improved its motion tracking technology. It now features collision detection capabilities – so your phone knows when you hit the wall – and can help you to avoid obstacles in the real world while you're virtually immersed.
A new eye tracking feature provides another way to interact with VR apps. It intelligently redirects processor resources to the area where you're physically looking, providing crisp visuals without draining your device's battery.
Platform fundamentals
Qualcomm's rounded off the new Snapdragon with a healthy round of performance improvements. Users can expect to see an up to 25 percent improvement over the last generation, whether while playing intensive games or just navigating through the operating system.
Simultaneously, power reduction is down by up to 30 percent in some of the most common mobile workloads. Qualcomm said the changes will allow consumers to do more with their devices.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
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"As leaders in mobile technology, we will transform the mobile experience with comprehensive advancements in visual processing, AI, security and connectivity," said Alex Katouzian, senior vice president and general manager of Qualcomm's mobile arm. "The Snapdragon 845 Mobile Platform is the next horizon of innovation and is going to transform the way people use their mobile devices to make their lives better."
The Snapdragon 845 is expected to start appearing in smartphones starting from early next year. As well as pure mobile devices, Qualcomm will also target an entirely new category with its next-gen flagship chip. In a joint announcement with Microsoft yesterday, the company unveiled the first "Always Connected" Windows 10 PCs to be powered by its processors. More laptops and convertibles using ARM-based Qualcomm chips are expected over the next few months
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