Qualcomm unveils new chip to power 5G smartphones

Qualcomm unveils new chip to power 5G smartphones

Qualcomm didn't go into too many details about the chip but did reveal the 855 will include 3D Sonic Sensor, an ultrasonic sensor, that makes it easier for phone makers to integrate fingerprint sensors under a phone's screen, improvements to gaming performance through a program it calls Elite Gaming, and improved AI integration for photography.

On Monday, Verizon and Samsung announced plans to launch one of the first commercial 5G smartphones in the first half of 2019, which will use chips from Qualcomm.

Consumer-ready 5G networks have yet to be deployed in earnest in the USA, but Qualcomm is getting ahead of the curve by announcing its latest processor and modem so that it can be integrated into upcoming smartphones as the first networks go live.

It will be AT&T's first announced 5G smartphone but second mobile 5G device; in October, it announced it will be offering the Netgear Nighthawk 5G mobile hotspot this year in select markets. The Snapdragon 855 also features the world's first Computer Vision Image Signal Processor (CV-ISP) to deliver new photo and video capture features.

Qualcomm may not be a company you're very familiar with, but if you own a top-end Android phone it's likely some of the company's tech is inside your device.

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Even with the various carriers talking up their 5G roadmaps, getting service will be the exception not the rule for some time to come.

That's vital since the focus has to be on how you benefit from 5G and multi-gigabit, not just how technologically impressive it is. Without 5G, the 855 is just another process shrink (rumors peg this as Qualcomm's first 7nm chipset), which is no small achievement (PUN!), but not much of a compelling marketing story. "Virtually everything is becoming connected and intelligent". "Now, we're partnering to create a smartphone to put the power of 5G in the palm of your hand". We're out at the Summit as guests of Qualcomm, and will be bringing you all the news this week.

As of the time of this report, the conference is still ongoing and we are still expecting the official announcement of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 SoC. And they haven't had a chance since 4G, so get ready for your next phone to have a big 5G logo slapped on it, because MORE GEES.

Complimenting the Snapdragon 855 will be the separate Qualcomm 3D Sonic Sensor.

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