Qualcomm announces Snapdragon 2100 chipset for 4G wearables, new 625, 435 and 425 SoCs for smartphones

Qualcomm has announced a new Snapdragon 2100 chipset for wearables along with a refreshed lineup for it mid-budget range chipsets.


Qualcomm announced a new line of wearable-ready SOCs (System On Chip) yesterday. Christened the Snapdragon 2100, this new SOC will bring with it a vast array of improvements and features over the existing Snapdragon 400 platform.

Raj Talluri, senior vice president, product management, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. states, “With the introduction of the Snapdragon Wear platform and Snapdragon Wear 2100 SoC, Qualcomm Technologies is well-positioned to extend its progress in wearables technology by enabling sleek designs, long battery life, smart sensing, and always- connected experiences in the next generation of wearable devices.”

Snapdragon already powers at least 65 different Wearable products in 30 countries and the list is only expected to grow. It’s thus in Snapdragon’s best interest to provide a platform that’s compelling enough to be used in the next generation of devices.

The Snapdragon 2100 (a.k.a. Snapdragon Wear platform) will feature a design that’s 30% smaller than its predecessor, consumes 25% less power and features an ultra-low power sensor hub. Of note is added 3G/4G/LTE connectivity as well as support for low-power Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

Qualcomm states that the Snapdragon Wear platform will consist of a full suite of silicon, software, support tools, and reference designs applicable to a whole range of industries.

Apart from Wear Platform, Qualcomm also showcased three new mobile SoCs that include LTE support, Wi-Fi 802.11ac with MU-MIMO, dual camera ISPs, Qualcomm Hexagon DSP and its proprietary Quick Charge 3.0.

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 is the mid-range SoC that also happens to be the first chipset to be built on the 14nm process that is currently used by Samsung for its Exynos chipsets on flagship devices. The 625 is clearly the successor to the current range of Snapdragon 600 series chipsets. The chipset is clocked at 2GHz  and features ARM Cortex-A53 cores in an octa-core set up. Handling the graphics is a Qualcomm Adreno 506 GPU with OpenGL ES 3.1+. There's support for eMMC 5.1 storage, LPDDR3 933MHz memory (RAM) and 24MP sensors with dual ISP support. More on the camera front, we get 4K resolution video capture and playback (which is impressive) and support for displays up to 1900x1200 display at 60fps. On the connectivity front, the chipset is clearly 4G ready with support for Cat 7 LTE, USB 3.0, NFC, and Bluetooth 4.1.

Next we have the Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 that is the elder sibling of the 425. The 435 packs in a set up that is similar to the 425, which includes a ARM Cortex-A53 cores but on a four core set up clocked at 1.4GHz. Graphics out here are handled by a Qualcomm Adreno 505 GPU and OpenGL ES 3.0+ support. There is eMMC 5.1 storage with SD 3.0 (UHS-I) and LPDDR3 800MHz memory (RAM). The chipset supports 21MP sensors with Dual Image Sensor Processor (ISP) and 1080p video capture and playback. Display support is in line with the 625 with 1080p displays at 60fps along with 1080p output.

Lastly, we have the budget range with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 that uses the same ARM Cortex-A53 cores but on a four core set up clocked at 1.4GHz. Graphics are handled by a Qualcomm Adreno 308 GPU and OpenGL ES 3.0. Memory options include eMMC 5.1 storage and LPDDR3 667MHz for RAM. The support for cameras includes 16MP units with Dual Image Sensor Processor with up to 1080p video capture and playback. Displays supported are limited to 1280x800 at 60fps.

Unlike the 625 that supports X9 LTE connectivity the 425 supports X6 LTE connectivity along with USB 2.0, NFC, and Bluetooth 4.1.

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 625, 435 and 425 SOCs will begin to appear in smartphones from the second half of 2016 and should heat up the competition, which will eventually benefit the consumer.


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