Qualcomm has a new mobile platform, and it targets upper-mid-range smartphones and promises to bring some new AI tricks. The chipmaker’s latest is the Snapdragon 7 Gen 3, which technically replaces the Snapdragon 7+ Gen 2, but the company is comparing most of the improvements to the older Snapdragon 7 Gen 1.
The new platform is said to bring a 15% increase in processing power, a 20% increase in energy efficiency, and a massive 50% jump in graphics capabilities. Based on 4nm manufacturing process, it Packs a single prime core, a trio of performance cores and four efficiency cores. Interestingly, these cores are clocked at a lower frequency than the Snapdragon 7+ Gen 2. However, this won’t be the only area where Qualcomm’s latest feels like a mixed bag.
Qualcomm says the new chip improves the accuracy of AI-supported facial detection, but it also says the AI also helps with tasks like understanding routines and how users interact with apps. There are also some new software-side enhancements coming to the Snapdragon Gen 7 series for the first time.
These include an AI re-mosaicing system for reducing grainy textures in photos, reducing noise, and video retouching. Support for Ultra HDR is also a first for a midrange chip. Spatial audio with head tracking and CD-quality wireless audio are also part of the package.
The Snapdragon 7 Gen 3 is based on the X63 cellular modem that promises high downlink speeds of up to 5Gbps. Interestingly, it adopts the Fast Connect 6700 Bluetooth + Wi-Fi modem instead of the faster Fast Connect 6900 modem on the Snapdragon 7+ Gen 2.
The status of camera capabilities is also interesting. The Snapdragon 7 Gen 3 relies on a triple 12-bit ISP system, while the Snapdragon 7+ Gen 2 relies on a more advanced triple 18-bit ISP architecture. The latter allows high-resolution photo and video capture in single and dual camera configurations.
In fact, the Snapdragon 7 Gen 3’s ISP is reduced to 120 frames-per-second (fps) slo-mo video capture, compared to the 1080p 240 fps video recording allowed by its predecessor. Overall, it looks like Qualcomm has jumped on the bandwagon and prepared a half-new midrange chip for Android phones.
Qualcomm says China’s Vivo and Honor are the first companies to adopt Snapdragon 7 Gen 3. The first wave of phones powered by the new chip is expected to be announced later this month.