Galaxy S10’s powerful chip leaks ahead of the official reveal

Kelley Robertson
December 5, 2018

(In other words, I wouldn't lose any sleep over the Galaxy S10 just yet.) After all, Samsung has been pretty candid about what the future of its notches should look like: they'll be U's or V's, or the screen will just have a hole punched out of it to accommodate the camera. But it's also likely that the next Snapdragon chip from Qualcomm will power the remaining Galaxy S10 models. The company's Nigeria branch posted a tweet from their official account promoting the Galaxy Note 9 from an iPhone. Its name is the Snapdragon 855, although internally it has been known by the initials SDM8150.

Earlier this year, Qualcomm announced the world's first 5G modem, the X50, which is supposed to increase download speeds by up to 20x over what most mobile users now experience.

Roland Quandt from Winfuture claims that the first wave of Snapdragon 855 SoCs will not supports 5G. The device will use the chipmaker's Snapdragon X50 5G NR modem and antenna modules with integrated RF transceiver, RF front-end and antenna elements.

It's not yet clear if this is sufficient to beat Google, Huawei, and Apple's latest ML accelerators, as Qualcomm's Hexagon processor used to be quite behind in terms of ML performance not too long ago.

Outside America, the 5G story seems muddier (which is not surprising, as 4G was slow on global adoption as well), which probably makes the Snapdragon 855 a bit less exciting. One of the high-end cores, WinFuture notes, is expected to go up to 2.84GHz. The Snapdragon 855 is the first chipset from Qualcomm with a dedicated Neural Processing Unit (NPU), which will help in AI computations. The Snapdragon 855 platform is also said to integrate a speedier Adreno 640 GPU. TSMC is also the supplier of 7nm A12 Bionic processors for the 2018 iPhones and iPad Pros.

The 855 is the world's first 5G-ready chipset in any practical sense, as it will be the first to appear in 5G phones you can actually buy for use on 5G networks that actually exist.

"5G will usher in a new era of mobile connectivity, allowing people to connect to data, experiences and other people in ways never thought possible", said Brian Higgins, VP of Wireless Device and Product Marketing at Verizon.

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