Qualcomm Snapdragon 835: Big Things Come In Small Packages

So Qualcomm and Samsung have partnered up to produce the latest Snapdragon processor, the Snapdragon 835 chip. The current big wig of the Android flagship phones is the Snapdragon 821 which can be found on the Google Pixel and Pixel XL, the OnePlus 3T and a couple of new Xiaomi devices . Other flagships like the Samsung Galaxy S7/S7 Edge or the LG V20 still feature the 820 chipset. Both chips are crazy fast and have been able to give lightning fast performance, especially to the Pixel which has been dubbed by the tech world as “Android’s iPhone”. The 835 chipset though, will be a cut above the current lot in more ways than one.

“This collaboration is an important milestone for our foundry business as it signifies confidence in Samsung’s leading chip process technology.”

-Jong Shik Yoon, executive vice president and head of foundry business, Samsung

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chip will be a 10 nm chip, rather than the previous 14 nm chips. How small is that? It’s about the size of a dozen water molecules, or a thousand times smaller than a strand of hair. In comparison, Apple’s A10 chip, fast though it is, is still on the 16 nm model.

The Snapdragon 835 will be manufactured via the 10 nm FinFET process patented by Samsung. This will allow for much more space while designing the interiors of smartphones and possibly, much greater battery life. This will ultimately lead to slimmer smartphones (one day we’ll all be wearing a thin piece of film or have an implant i’m sure). The process allows for a 30% increase in area efficiency, 27% increase in performance and a 40% decrease in power consumption.

source: Snapdragon Blog
source: Snapdragon Blog

Some bells and whistles include Quick Charge 4.0 that will allow for 20% faster charging (a definitive point of competition now that OnePlus and Google Pixel boast it as a main feature) than Quick Charge 3.0. Qualcomm claims that you’ll be able to get 5 hours of charge for five minutes of charging. What’s more, you’ll be able to get from 0-50% in 15 minutes. Quick Charge 4.0 will also include support for USB-PD and USB Type-C and advanced safety features for both the “adapter and mobile device”.

source: Snapdragon Blog
source: Snapdragon Blog

These include measuring the voltage, current and temperature throughout the device. Qualcomm calls this technology INOV (Intelligent Negotiation for Optimum Voltage) version 3; it’s an algorithm that allows your device to request different power levels depending on their current condition. There’s also something called third-generation Dual Charge that allows for greater thermal dissipation and a reduction in charge time. I guess the Galaxy Note 7 taught us all something very valuable.

Devices being unveiled in the first half of 2017 will contain the Snapdragon 835 chip. These will almost certainly include upcoming flagships like the Samsung Galaxy S8 or the OnePlus 4.