- Qualcomm unveiled next-generation mobile and desktop platforms at Snapdragon Summit 2023 in Maui, Hawaii.
- The company also unveiled its new S7 and S7 Pro platforms for audio devices. It unveiled Snapdragon Seamless, a cross-platform technology that enables Android, Windows and Qualcomm devices to work as one integrated system.
- The new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 supports practical AI features, and the X Elite, Snapdragon’s next desktop platform for Windows PCs, is focused on performance and efficiency.
Qualcomm has just wrapped up Day 1 of Snapdragon Summit 2023 at Maui, Hawaii. The company has made four significant announcements this time, including all the Snapdragon X Elite platform for PCs, Snapdragon S7 and S7 Pro for audio devices, Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 to power the next Android flagships in 2024, and Seamless connect to bring the ecosystem across non-Apple devices. Here is the roundup of all the major announcements at Qualcomm Snapdragon Summit 2023.
Table of Contents
Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 – With New AI Features
Qualcomm has announced its next-generation flagship processor, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3, and its successor, the 8 Gen 2, which will power flagship Android devices in 2024. The new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 is more powerful and efficient than the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, but the most noticeable change is the strong focus on AI.
The new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 AI engine features on-device generative AI models. Qualcomm has collaborated with Meta to run the Llama 2 model locally on the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3. At launch, it supports more than 20 generative AI models, including large language models LLM from Meta and stable diffusion for image creation. It also supports creative AI camera features such as removing objects from images and videos, creating fake backgrounds, enhancing certain parts of the photo, taking HDR photos in real time, and creating a Vlogger view that lets you take shots with the rear and front cameras simultaneously, and more.
The Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 is manufactured using a TSMC 4nm process based on Qualcomm Kryo 64-bit architecture. It is equipped with a main processor core that can reach a clock speed of up to 3.3 GHz thanks to Arm Cortex-X4 technology, 5 performance cores that can reach a speed of up to 3.2 GHz, and 2 efficiency cores that can reach a speed of up to 2.3 GHz. According to Qualcomm, the new 8 Gen 3 offers 30% better performance and 20% more power efficiency than its predecessor. It also offers 25% better GPU performance and 20% more power efficiency. The Adreno 750 GPU GPU supports Hardware Ray tracing and 240 FPS games.
The Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 also supports 5G and comes with a Snapdragon X75 5G modem, LPDDR5X RAM support, UFS 4.0 support, Wi-Fi 7, Quad HD + display support with refresh rates up to 144Hz and 4K resolution at 60Hz refresh rate. It also has Bluetooth 5.4 and supports 108 MP cameras to record videos up to 4k at 120 FPS.
The new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 also supports Qualcomm Seamless and can connect to the S7 and S7 pro audio platforms. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 will power Android flagships in 2024. Samsung’s Galaxy S24 series, in particular, Xioami 14 series and more, Realme, Oneplus 12 series and more.
Snapdragon X Elite – The M1 for Windows PCs
The Snapdragon X Elite is Qualcomm’s next-generation desktop platform based on the custom-integrated Qualcomm Oryon CPU architecture. The new X Elite targets Apple’s own M series with colossal performance and efficiency. The new X Elite design will be based on technology from Nuvia, a startup Qualcomm acquired in 2021.
The Snapdragon X Elite is a powerful processor based on TSMC 4nm fabication process with custom Oryon CPU 64-bit architecture. It has 12 CPU cores clocked at 3.8 GHz and can reach up to 4.3 GHz with single and dual-core boosts. It also has an Adreno GPU with 4.6 TFLOPs and DX12 API support, which offers better gaming performance and improved graphics. The processor supports LPDDR5X memory up to 64 GB and the latest SD v3.0 memory with UFS 4.0 seeds. The detailed specifications of the Snapdragon X Elite processor can be found in the picture below.
In terms of connectivity, the Snapdragon X Elite features the latest Wi-Fi 7 and Bluetooth 5.4. The new X Elite promises up to 2x better performance and efficiency than its competitors and is likely targeting Apple M-series processors. Qualcomm claims the new Snapdragon x Elite will outperform the Intel Core i7 and have 50% faster peak multi-thread performance than the Apple M2 processor. We should wait and see how it performs against the competition in the practical test. PCs with the Qualcomm Snapdragon X Elite will hit the market in mid-2024.
Qualcomm S7 and S7 Pro-Gen 1 Sound Platforms
Qualcomm also announced a new S7 and S7 pro-Gen 1 sound platform for earbuds, headphones, speakers, and mobile and computing platforms. The new audio platform features high performance with low power consumption, on-device AI, and advanced connectivity features.
The S7 Pro sound platform is the first to support Qualcomm Expanded Personal Area Network Technology (XPAN) and Micropower Wi-Fi connectivity to extend the audio range of the device. This offers a significantly better range compared to Bluetooth technology. The S7 and S7 pro also feature on-device AI for better audio personalization. It also supports lossless music stretching up to 192kHz and enhanced multi-channel spatial audio for gaming. It also supports Qualcomm Seamless for better cross-device connectivity. Audio-Technica, Bose, Edifier, Fiio, Jabra, LG, Master & Dynamic, Shure, and other brands are the first to adopt the new S7 and S7 Pro.
Qualcomm Seamless – The Alternative Ecosystem
Qualcomm Seamless Connect aims to build an ecosystem that seamlessly connects Android, Windows, and Snapdragon devices to deliver a unified experience across devices. This feature is already built into the latest 8 Gen 3 mobile processors and X Elite desktop CPUs. In the future, Snapdragon Seamless will also be available on AR and IoT platforms. Companies such as Microsoft, Android, Xiaomi, Honor, and Lenovo plan to integrate Qualcomm Seamless into their devices to enable seamless connectivity between multiple devices from different manufacturers.
Wrapup – Snapdragon Summit 2023
Qualcomm has unveiled its latest set of next-generation platforms that will power the latest devices in 2024. Announced at the event was the new X Elite Desktop, which represents a significant step forward for Windows PCs. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 offers more advanced AI capabilities, while the new S7 and S7 Pro promise improved audio and connectivity features. In addition, Snapdragon Seamless connects Windows and Android devices, creating a unified and optimized user experience across all devices.
Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 will power the upcoming Android smartphone. We will have to wait a bit longer for X-lite-powered laptops and desktops. The devices are expected from leading OEMs from mid-2024. Qualcomm makes a big promise and hopes for robust performance with seamless connectivity between devices.