Qualcomm has announced their latest premium processor, the Snapdragon 835 at CES 2017. With the Snapdragon 835, the company is returning to an octa-core SoC, after using a quad-core setup in the Snapdragon 820 (and Snapdragon 821). Breaking it down, we're looking at four performance cores running at 2.45GHz and then four efficiency cores running at 1.9GHz. This is paired with the Adreno 540 GPU, which does bring support for OpenGL ES 3.2, Vulkan, DX12 and full OpenCL 2.0. This basically means that the Snapdragon 835 is born for virtual reality and augmented reality, both of which are becoming increasingly popular topics in the tech world these days.
As Qualcomm announced already, the Snapdragon 835 is on a 10-nanometer process. For most people, this won't mean much. But basically it means that the physical size of the processor is smaller. Allowing Qualcomm's customers to make even thinner devices, or have extra room for battery, or throw in some other things. Samsung is manufacturing the Snapdragon 835, as the company already announced. The Snapdragon 835 does have Qualcomm's X16 LTE modem integrated, which will give users GigabitClass LTE connectivity. Also integrated is 2×2 802.11ac Wave 2 WiFi and Bluetooth 5. The Qualcomm Kryo 280 CPU and Qualcomm's Hexagon 682 DSP add even better processing power and performance, and even has support for TensorFlow.
When it comes to a new processor, the number one thing everyone wants to ask about is battery life. And with the Snapdragon 835, you will see the SoC be about 30% more efficient. This is due to it being about 35% smaller than the Snapdragon 821, and also using 25% less power. Qualcomm has also included Quick Charge 4.0 which will give you up to 20% faster charging than Quick Charge 3.0 provided. When it comes to the camera, the Snapdragon 835 will enhance both pictures and video, with smooth optical video capabilities, fast auto-focus technologies and HDR true-to-life colors. This is all thanks to Qualcomm's Spectra 180 camera ISP, which features dual 14-bit ISPs that supports up to a 32-megapixel camera, or dual 16-megapixel cameras.
Virtual reality and augmented reality are big topics these days, and it's a selling point for the Snapdragon 835. Qualcomm says that this new chip was designed to "meet the high performance demands, thermal limits and power efficiency constraints of the next-generation virtual and augmented reality designs." It does support Google Daydream, however this doesn't necessarily mean that every device with the Snapdragon 835 will be optimized for Daydream. Qualcomm notes that the Snapdragon 835 does include up to 25% increase in 3D graphics rendering and performance. Qualcomm's Snapdragon 835 processor is already in mass production and is being sampled by its customers. The company is expecting to see devices with their processor launching in the first half of 2017. But as of right now, there are no announcements for Snapdragon 835-powered devices. Expect to see plenty of those at Mobile World Congress next month.