Qualcomm preps new graphics, image processing platform for Snapdragon

Qualcomm's latest graphics and image processing platform promises to improve the image and graphics processing for things like computer vision in mobile devices.

Qualcomm on Wednesday launched new versions of its graphics and image signal processing units to better equip its Snapdragon mobile chips to handle computer vision and DSLR-like photography.

The technology, part of Qualcomm's Adreno 5xx graphics processing unit (GPU) architecture, will be integrated into the company's upcoming Snapdragon 820 and 620/618 processors.

Devices based on the Snapdragon 820 will be available in the first half of 2016. The chip will also have Qualcomm's 14-bit Spectra image signal processing unit.

The upshot here is that mobile chipmakers are prepping for the next-gen user experience, which will revolve around computer vision, graphics and virtual reality with a low power footprint. Meanwhile, device makers are increasingly competing in the smartphone space on camera quality.

According to Qualcomm, its Adreno GPU platform has 40 percent lower power consumption with a 40 percent performance bump compared to its predecessor.

Adreno also has:

  • APIs to the latest graphics and compute standards;
  • Co-processing with 64-bit processors and shared virtual memory.
  • New rendering and compression techniques to boost performance with a lower power footprint.
  • Support for better pixel quality in images.