Qualcomm Snapdragon 845: what’s in stock for AI, 5G and more

snapdragon 845Qualcomm Technologies has officially unveiled Snapdragon 845 Mobile Platform, revealing its capabilities for diverse applications and user base.

Some of the capabilities include immersive multimedia experiences including eXtended reality (XR), on-device artificial intelligence (AI), and lightning-fast connectivity, and it supports a new secure processing unit (SPU) delivering vault-like security for premium, flagship mobile devices.

The Snapdragon 845 Mobile Platform allows users to capture cinema-grade videos thanks to the integrated Qualcomm Spectra 280 image signal processor (ISP) and Qualcomm Adreno 630 visual processing subsystem.

The new Adreno 630 is designed to deliver innovations for new XR experiences that span virtual, augmented and mixed reality. Snapdragon 845 is the first mobile platform to enable room-scale 6 degrees of freedom (6DoF) with simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM)—for features such as wall-collision detection.

Additionally, Snapdragon 845 introduces “Adreno foveation,” which substantially reduces power consumption, improves visual quality and boosts XR application performance, as compared to the previous generation.


Snapdragon 845, Qualcomm’s third-generation AI mobile platform, delivers 3x improvement in overall AI performance of the prior generation SoC. Snapdragon 845 improves voice-driven smart assistants with improved always-on keyword detection and ultra-low-power voice processing thanks to the performance from the Qualcomm Aqstic audio codec (WCD9341) and low-power audio subsystem, so users can interact with their devices using their voice all day.

In addition to the existing support for Google’s TensorFlow and Facebook’s Caffe/Caffe2 frameworks, the Snapdragon Neural Processing Engine (NPE) SDK now supports Tensorflow Lite and the new Open Neural Network Exchange (ONNX), making it easy for developers to use their framework of choice, including Caffe2, CNTK and MxNet. Snapdragon 845 also supports Google’s Android NN API.

In security front, Snapdragon 845 introduces a hardware isolated subsystem called the secure processing unit (SPU), which is designed to add vault-like characteristics to existing layers of Qualcomm Technologies’ mobile security solutions. Doing so makes it possible for improved biometrics security used for authentication, as well as user or application data key management used to encrypt critical information.

For enhanced connectivity, Snapdragon 845 integrates Qualcomm Technologies’ second-generation Gigabit LTE solution – the Snapdragon X20 LTE modem. Snapdragon X20 modem can also accelerate global availability of Gigabit LTE as operators prepare for 5G. The modem supports LTE Category 18 peak download speeds of 1.2 Gbps, up to 5x carrier aggregation, License Assisted Access (LAA), Dual SIM-Dual VoLTE as well as 4×4 MIMO on up to 3 aggregated carriers.

Snapdragon 845 also includes diversity-enhanced 60GHz 802.11ad Wi-Fi for more robust multi-gigabit coverage at speeds up to 4.6 Gbps, and integrated 802.11ac Wi-Fi with advanced features that provide up to 16X faster connection setup, simultaneous dual-band support for an ever-expanding set of applications and 30 percent more capacity utilization on carrier Wi-Fi networks, compared to the previous generation.

The platform’s proprietary enhancements to Bluetooth 5 allow users to broadcast audio simultaneously to multiple wireless speakers, smartphones or other devices and are designed to reduce battery consumption of wireless earbuds by up to 50 percent compared to the previous generation.

Snapdragon 845’s new architectures are being built to transform the user experience while providing significant improvements in performance and battery life. The new camera and visual processing architectures will help Snapdragon 845 deliver up to 30 percent power reduction for video capture, games and XR applications compared to the previous generation.

Graphics performance and power efficiencies will also garner up to a 30 percent improvement as a result of the new Adreno 630, compared to the previous generation. The new Qualcomm Kryo 385 architecture, built on Arm Cortex technology, will see up to 25 percent performance uplift across gaming, application launch times, and performance intensive applications compared to the previous generation.

“As leaders in mobile technology, we will transform the mobile experience with comprehensive advancements in visual processing, AI, security and connectivity,” said Alex Katouzian, senior vice president and general manager, mobile, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “The Snapdragon 845 Mobile Platform is the next horizon of innovation and is going to transform the way people use their mobile devices to make their lives better.”

The Snapdragon 845 Mobile Platform is currently sampling to customers and is expected to begin shipping in commercial devices in early 2018. Snapdragon 845 will power devices such as smartphones, XR headsets and always connected PCs.

editor@telecomlead.com