Seemingly ahead of schedule, Qualcomm has published a press release announcing the upcoming ASUS ZenFone AR, which will reportedly show up at CES. The press release is dated January 4 and does seem to have been published earlier than it was supposed to be. Either way, the big reveal here is that the ZenFone AR will be a Daydream-ready smartphone, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor on board. Of course, this is a smartphone that had already been touted as a Tango-enabled smartphone, so this means that users won't have to choose between the two technologies anymore. This also does means that it will be the first such device, and one which has come through ahead of Lenovo's modular, Daydream-compatible Moto Z.
Even if the Moto Z had gotten a Tango module before this, ASUS' newest smartphone would be the first to run the enhanced Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 SoC with Tango content, making for better graphics and a somewhat wider range of capabilities due to the increased CPU horsepower. Qualcomm's press release goes into serious detail about just what sort of improvements users can expect the Snapdragon 821 to bring to Tango. With some of the biggest benefits including the Qualcomm Hexagon 680 DSP, a digital signal processor capable of real-time calculations using measured input and the Qualcomm All-Ways Aware Sensor Hub, which can gather input from a number of different real-world variables and throw it at the DSP in a matter of milliseconds. Qualcomm's Spectra ISP technology is also on board to help ensure the cameras are the best they can be.
Other details about the phone are sparse, and the press release from Qualcomm doesn't touch on things like the device's design, how the cameras are aligned, the amount of RAM and storage, or the display resolution. With a Snapdragon 821 on board with full Daydream support, we can reasonably expect pretty decent specs elsewhere, and of course a Daydream-compliant display, meaning low persistence, AMOLED technology, and a resolution no lower than 1,920 x 1,080. According to the press release, those who will be attending the show will be able to check out the smartphone at Qualcomm's CES booth and presumably, at the ASUS booth as well.