BARCELONA: Qualcomm has unveiled its first octa-core 64-bit processor as it expands its line-up of top-end chips.
Based on ARMv8-A architecture, the Snapdragon 610 and 615 additions to the Snapdragon 600 line are 28nm system on chip (SoC) 64-bit processors. The chips also integrate the firm's third-generation LTE modem for 4G and dual-SIM support.
The main difference between the two chips is that the 615 supports LTE and 64-bit capabilities using octa-core processing, putting Qualcomm firmly at the head of this latest development. Both processors feature Qualcomm's Adreno 405 GPU from the Snapdragon 800.
Qualcomm executive vice president Murthy Renduchintala said at Mobile World Congress (MWC): "One thing that's going to be a hallmark of our Snapdragon story is that we're going to be providing Snapdragon solutions that essentially maximise our user experience at every tier so smartphone can prevail.
"With the additional Snapdragon processors in our premium-tier level we are also proliferating in the mass market tier with the 610 and 615, which follows on from the Snapdragon 400 announcement at CES."
The Snapdragon 610 and 615 also support the latest mobile graphics APIs, such as DirectX 11.2 and Open GL ES3.0, with added support for hardware-accelerated geometry shading and hardware tessellation, which Qualcomm said will provide more detailed, realistic mobile games and user interfaces.
The Snapdragon 610 and 615 processors are anticipated to begin sampling in the third quarter of 2014 and the first commercial devices will be released in the fourth quarter.
Qualcomm also launched the Snapdragon 801 processor at MWC, which includes several enhancements to its predecessor, the Snapdragon 800, including higher-quality imaging with support for larger, faster camera sensors and improved image post-processing. In addition to improved mobile graphics and gaming, there's also higher-speed SD card support and dedicated dual-SIM hardware support.
"The Snapdragon 801 is a key platform for us, key drivers are to improve user experiences, [include support for] h265 video, supporting more sophisticated camera solutions and dual-SIM configurations," said Renduchintala.
"The camera performance is, from a sensor point of view, 45 percent faster, the graphics solutions have been improved by over 28 percent, [with a] 14 percent CPU capability improvement as well as 14 faster memory solutions."
Like the Snapdragon 800 processor, the Snapdragon 801 includes integrated 4G LTE and 802.11ac WiFi connectivity, a quad-core Krait 400 processor for advanced performance and an Adreno 330 GPU for premium graphics.
The Snapdragon 801 processor is expected to be available in commercial devices this quarter, Qualcomm said.
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