Qualcomm Inc on Tuesday announced a new flagship smartphone chip that will feature enhanced gaming and photo capabilities and will be manufactured by Samsung’s chip manufacturing division (Samsung Electronics Co Ltd).
Called the Snapdragon 888, the 5G chip is at the top of Qualcomm’s mobile phone processor range. Smartphones that include the chip should be released in the first quarter of next year.
High-end Android phones from Xiaomi Corp and LG Electronics Inc. are expected to use the chip.
This is the first time that Samsung, which is fiercely competing with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), is making Qualcomm’s flagship chip through its new 5-nanometer smartphone chip process. The South Korean company won a contract for 5G chips from Qualcomm earlier this year.
Apple’s new iPhones also use a chip made with 5-nanometer technology, but analysts believe the iPhone chip was manufactured by TSMC.
This year’s chip is focused on improving overall tasks, said Alex Katuzian, Qualcomm’s senior vice president for mobile, computing and infrastructure projects, quoted by Reuters.
The new chip can process 120 high resolution images per second, while the chip’s new artificial intelligence processor will allow the software to select the top five pictures and combine them into one final image.
Katuzian announced that orders for the Snapdragon 888 will not be split between Samsung and TSMC, adding that Samsung is best suited for this chip in terms of design needs and deadlines.
“I think it would be really bad if you had to split your resources between two different productions for a given chip,” he says. “We work hard with the manufacturers and are very, very confident in what we want to use a few years before the chip comes out.”