OnQ Blog

Snapdragon 845: Innovative and intelligent mobility experiences start here

New architectures for AI and immersion have changed the game

Dec 6, 2017

Qualcomm products mentioned within this post are offered by Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries.

Imagine your mobile device using more advanced artificial intelligence (AI), providing a camera that captures more than a billion colors, and allowing you to explore an enhanced gateway to a world of extended reality (XR).

What’s so special about our new Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 Mobile Platform? First, it’s built with new architectures designed for artificial intelligence and immersion. It’s thoughtfully engineered to transform the camera experience for mobile users who can now capture cinema-grade videos. It offers vault-like security to help protect your passwords and biometric information. It’s also designed to better blur the lines between the physical and virtual worlds for the future of XR, all while offering Gigabit-fast connections speeds* with our next generation modem. Snapdragon 845 is our latest premium mobile platform that will power the next generation of mobile devices, including flagship smartphones, XR headsets, mobile PCs, and more.

The ultimate personal assistant for camera, XR, and voice

Based on our on-device AI leadership, Snapdragon 845 is our third generation AI platform, powering AI for use in cutting-edge applications related to camera, XR, voice recognition, and more. It debuts a new Qualcomm Hexagon 685 DSP architecture, with GPU and CPU enhancements that together deliver up to three times faster processing of neural networks running on-device compared to the previous generation. AI processing can help better process your photos, creating effects such as bokeh or enhanced image recognition. AI processing can also be used to recognize keywords and voices so your device can better understand and respond to the world around you. Using XR, the Snapdragon 845 can track head and body movements so that your virtual world is more lifelike and intuitive. On-device AI processing allows more information to be processed locally, resulting in better latency, reliability, and security.

Our AI platform supports popular frameworks such as Google’s TensorFlow and Facebook’s Caffe2. Support of multiple frameworks, along with our Snapdragon Neural Processing Engines, makes it easy for developers to optimize their applications power and performance using AI.

Capture a billion colors to produce and play amazing video

Snapdragon 845 takes your camera experience to new heights with our Qualcomm Spectra 280 ISP. Our new camera architecture enriches image color quality, enhances depth sensing, and accelerates performance.

We’re further improving color technology as we’re capturing 64 times more shades of color information than our previous generation flagship SoC, the Snapdragon 835. In fact, the Snapdragon 845 is the first mobile platform to enable this leap in color capture, creating high-dynamic range (HDR) video for an amazing playback experience on Ultra HD Premium. This leap entails improved color volume with 10-bit processing, supports a wide Rec. 2020 color gamut, and offers a significant increase in luminance.

Want to see your photos and videos really pop? When combined with our new 3D depth sensing module, your device can collect tens of thousands of depth points and detect changes in depth as small as 0.125mm apart. We also offer hardware acceleration of multi-frame capture, merging the best of multiple pictures into one beautiful picture. Videos are beautiful too, as our new platform can now capture 60 images at 16 megapixels each every second. Depth maps, combined with AI and multi-frame processing, allows your camera to produce a stunningly accurate photos and videos.

Immerse yourself in virtual worlds

Snapdragon 845 will boost your XR experience thanks to the integrated Qualcomm Adreno 630 visual processing subsystem, which consists of advancements in graphics, video, and display. Combined with our heterogeneous computing, Adreno 630 is designed to enhance key areas of immersion, including intuitive interactions, visuals, and sounds.

We pioneered 6 degrees of freedom (6-DoF) for mobile with the Snapdragon 835. This advanced motion tracking technology detects where you look as well as your body’s movement within a virtual world. With the Snapdragon 845, our new Adreno 630 better merges the physical with the virtual world using Room-Scale 6-DoF with Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM), a mobile VR first. This includes wall collision technology and allows you to move freely through both your virtual and physical world while avoiding real world obstacles that could inhibit your experience. For example, SLAM can detect and map physical objects, then overlay objects atop them in your virtual world to help you avoid them.

Another new feature built in XR technology innovation is Adreno Foveation, which combines graphics rendering with eye tracking to understand where you’re looking. And it directs the highest graphics resources to where you’re physically looking, providing you with the sharpest visuals possible. The user benefit of Adreno Foveation is to maximize memory efficiency and battery life so you can remain completely tetherless for extended periods of time.

Our Adreno 630 can also simplify your XR experience using voice commands, so you can interact using voice in addition to hand gestures and controllers.

Vault-like security for your data

Snapdragon 845 takes mobile security to a new level. Our latest platform introduces a new Secure Processing Unit (SPU), featuring vault-like security to store your most personal biometric data such as fingerprint, iris, voice, and facial information. It has its own dedicated processor and its own memory, segregated from the OS environment. Every day, devices are under attack from malicious applications. With the SPU, it will help protect your most precious personal information, just like you physically protect your own valuable personal items.

Connect globally at Gigabit speeds

We announced our Snapdragon X20 modem as a discrete part earlier this year and now have integrated the X20 into the Snapdragon 845 platform. One benefit is that this opens up the possibility of cellular speeds at 1.2 gigabits per second, or 20 percent faster than our previous generation, leading-edge modem. We call this the “wireless fiber user experience,” and continue to be a leader in delivering connectivity speeds once thought only possible with a wired connection.

Even more importantly, our modem configurations help allow an increasing number of operators and countries to offer Gigabit LTE speeds*. In 2017, 43 operators in 25 countries have launched Gigabit LTE networks and more are on the way. Many more mobile operators can utilize the speed and spectral efficiency of our X20 modem, which now supports LTE carriers, advanced antenna configurations, and up to 12 total LTE spatial streams. This expanded flexibility allows for 90 percent of the world’s cellular networks to upgrade to Gigabit LTE.

Experience unbridled performance

The Snapdragon 845 Mobile Platform is redesigned with AI and immersion in mind. We’ve built new architectures that are designed to work together collectively and not in isolation. This is the foundation of what heterogenous computing is - various engines working together to enhance the user experience.


Check out the Snapdragon 845 at the 2017 Snapdragon Technology Summit.

See it here

And even though we’ve added a great deal of performance, we’re also extending battery life. Our new Qualcomm Spectra camera and Adreno graphics architectures boost power efficiency by up to 30 percent compared to our previous generations. And when you inevitably do run out of battery, Qualcomm Quick Charge 4+ technology is engineered to get your device up to 50 percent of a full charge in just 15 minutes.

There’s a lot to be excited about with premium devices using our new platform, which is expected to ship early next year. Amazing photos, smooth video, smart applications, fast connections, immersive XR, and extreme power. We can’t wait for user devices to start shipping!


*Requires compatible network.
Qualcomm Snapdragon, Qualcomm Adreno, Qualcomm Hexagon, Qualcomm Spectra, and Qualcomm Quick Charge are products of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.

Opinions expressed in the content posted here are the personal opinions of the original authors, and do not necessarily reflect those of Qualcomm Incorporated or its subsidiaries ("Qualcomm"). Qualcomm products mentioned within this post are offered by Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries. The content is provided for informational purposes only and is not meant to be an endorsement or representation by Qualcomm or any other party. This site may also provide links or references to non-Qualcomm sites and resources. Qualcomm makes no representations, warranties, or other commitments whatsoever about any non-Qualcomm sites or third-party resources that may be referenced, accessible from, or linked to this site.

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Senior Vice President, Product Management

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