A common complaint about the new trend of gaming phones is that they use the same system-on-a-chip (and largely the same other internals) as non-gaming phones, so they usually don't have much of a performance boost over other devices. That could finally change, as Qualcomm announced today that its developing an overclocked Snapdragon 855 — the aptly-named Snapdragon 855 Plus.
Qualcomm is touting the 855 Plus as a processor for "5G, gaming, AI and XR" — all the buzzwords. It still has a separate X50 modem for 5G connectivity, and the same 4th-gen AI Engine, but it does have two minor advantages over the regular 855. It uses Kyro CPU cores clocked at up to 2.96GHz, a modest boost from 2.84GHz on the 855, and the Adreno 840 GPU is supposedly 15% faster.
That's not a major improvement by any stretch of the imagination, but it's at least something that will give Android gaming phones a slight edge over mainstream flagships (unless the flagship in question is a recent iPhone). Qualcomm didn't reveal which upcoming phones will use the chip, but perhaps we'll see an ASUS ROG Phone sequel soon, or yet another Nubia Red Magic device.
ASUS has confirmed that its upcoming gaming device, the ROG Phone II, will use this new chip from Qualcomm.
SAN DIEGO — July 15, 2019 — Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm
Incorporated (NASDAQ: QCOM), unveiled the Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 855 Plus Mobile
Platform, a follow on to the flagship Snapdragon 855 launching with leading OEMs globally,
built for speed to support enhanced performance and deliver leading experiences in multi-gigabit
5G, gaming, AI and XR. The platform features a boost in performance that will raise gaming to
the next level for a truly Snapdragon Elite Gaming experience—especially when gaming in the
“Snapdragon 855 Plus will raise the bar for elite gamers with the increase in CPU and GPU
performance and elevate experiences for 5G, gaming, AI and XR, which is something our OEM
customers look to us to deliver,” said Kedar Kondap, vice president, product management,
Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “Snapdragon 855 Plus is our most advanced mobile platform to
date and will build upon the success of the 2019 Android flagship Snapdragon 855 5G mobile
Snapdragon 855 Plus with an integrated multi-gigabit Snapdragon X24 LTE 4G modem also
supports 5G connectivity using the X50 5G modem and Qualcomm Technologies’ RF Front-end
solutions to deliver best-in-class cellular performance, superior coverage and all-day battery life
in premium 5G devices. The platform also offers the following enhancements over Snapdragon
- Qualcomm® Kryo™ 485 CPU Prime core clock speed at up to 2.96GHz
- Qualcomm® Adreno™ 640 GPU offers a 15% increase
Snapdragon 855 Plus includes many of the latest technologies and features from Qualcomm
Technologies related to gaming, AI and XR, offering consumers outstanding performance for
premium user experiences for the things they want to do most:
- Gaming: Snapdragon 855 Plus is built for speed to support enhanced performance and
deliver leading experiences in gaming. The Snapdragon Elite Gaming Experience gives
you a competitive edge with a full suite of hardware and software features that are fully
optimized for gaming, including the Vulkan 1.1 Graphics Driver that is 20% more power
efficient than Open GL ES. The Snapdragon Elite Gaming Experience also features
software enhancements such as Game Jank Reducer, Game Fast Loader, Game Anti
Cheat Extensions, and more.
- AI: Experience ultra-responsive gaming with the 4th generation multi-core Qualcomm®
AI Engine, which offers a total capacity of more than 7 trillion operations per second (7
TOPs), providing a powerful blend of dedicated and programmable AI acceleration
- XR: Experience immersive XR (virtual reality/augmented reality) easily with XR viewers
that connect to a mobile device fueled by the Snapdragon 855 Plus with the 5G X50
modem, able to access blazing-fast, ultra-smooth 5G experiences.
Commercial devices based on Snapdragon 855 Plus are expected to be commercial 2H 2019. For
full specifications on Snapdragon 855 Plus visit:
Qualcomm invents breakthrough technologies that transform how the world computes, connects
and communicates. When we connected the phone to the Internet, the mobile revolution was
born. Today, our inventions are the foundation for life-changing products, experiences, and
industries. As we lead the world to 5G, we envision this next big change in cellular technology
spurring a new era of intelligent, connected devices and enabling new opportunities in connected
cars, remote delivery of health care services, and the IoT — including smart cities, smart homes,
and wearables. Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Qualcomm
Incorporated, operates, along with its subsidiaries, substantially all of our engineering, research
and development functions, and substantially all of our products and services businesses,
including the QCT semiconductor business. For more information, visit Qualcomm’s
website, OnQ blog, Twitter and Facebook pages.