With all the new phones, tablets, smartbands, and VR headsets debuting at Mobile World Congress, you’d be forgiven for forgetting about the companies making the components that power these devices. After all, new flagship phones are a lot more fun to look at than a new chip.
Be that as it may, its these new chips that push our phones to do more and offer functionality beyond what our devices are capable of doing today. Though most of us are still waiting to get our hands on a Snapdragon 810-powered device, Qualcomm today talked briefly about its next generation of Snapdragon, the Snapdragon 820.
Details are scant, but Qualcomm did reveal that the Snapdragon 820 is a 64-bit SoC manufactured on a FinFET process, which could mean either TSMC’s 16nm or Samsung’s 14nm manufacturing process.
We also know that this chip will herald the arrival of Qualcomm’s custom ARMv8 core, which is codenamed Kryo. Though these chips won’t be sampling until the second half of this year, it’s exciting to hear about Qualcomm’s new plans, especially that custom Kryo core. For the Snapdragon 810, Qualcomm surprised us with eight off-the-shelf ARM reference cores, so we lost out on the company’s careful customization.
Perhaps most interesting of all is the Zeroth platform, the cognitive computing platform Qualcomm says will make our phones, cars, and wearables more intuitive and facilitate more natural interactions with our electronics. This could be anything from triggering certain actions following environmental changes (via sound or speech), to recognizing gestures, or personalization based on your facial expressions. Zeroth is designed to work with the Snapdragon 820 and will be demoed at MWC.