Qualcomm has introduced two new premium midrange mobile phone chipsets, the Snapdragon 630 and Snapdragon 660, that shall be succeeding very popular Snapdragon 625 and Snapdragon 653. Both of these chips drag down flagship Snapdragon 800 series features to midrange price. This is also the first time Qualcomm is using its Kyro cores for mid-tier SoCs.
Both of these chipsets are formed on power efficient 14nm FinFET process and support LPDDR4 RAM up to 8GB. Interestingly, both the Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 and Snapdragon 660 get X12 LTE modem (600Mpbs down/ 150 Mbps up) which debuted in last year flagship Snapdragon 820/821 chipsets.
Both Snapdragon 630 and Snapdragon 660 will also have latest Quick Charge 4.0 and Bluetooth 5.0 support that was hitherto exclusive to flagship Snapdragon 835.
Another component common between the two is Spectra 160 ISP. Smartphones employing these chips will have due support for dual camera optical zoom, dual PDAF, Enhanced electronic image stabilization, improved low light performance and more.
The Snapdragon 660 will be the highest performing mid-range chip from Qualcomm. The Kyro 260 CPU uses 4 custom Cortex-A53 cores and 4 custom Cortex A73 cores adjoined in big.LITTLE configuration. According to Qualcomm, the Adreno 512 GPU will offer 30 percent improved performance over Adreno 510 in Snapdragon 653/652.
The GPU supports new graphics APIs including Vulcan and will enable Snapdragon 660 phones to support QHD (2K) resolution.
Snapdragon 660 will also include Qualcomm’s Hexagon 680 DSP (same as in Snapdragon 820) and is the first mid-range chip to include advanced machine learning and computer vision capabilities.
The Snapdragon 630 doesn’t see a radical change in terms of core architecture. There are 8 Cortex-A53 cores arranged in big.LITTLE configuration clocked at 2.2GHz and 1.8GHz, respectively. In comparison, the Adreno 508 GPU should bring a notable improvement over Adreno 506.
The Snapdragon 660 is quite interesting as it can deliver performance comparable to flagship Snapdragon 800 series for a mid-range price. Devices powered by Snapdragon 660 are expected to surface in the next quarter. The Snapdragon 630 powered phones are expected to arrive by the end of this year.