Qualcomm unveils Snapdragon 660, 630 mobile platforms

The processors include features originally only found in premium product families.
Written by Charlie Osborne, Contributing Writer

Qualcomm has revealed the Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 and 630 mobile platforms, designed to push the chip maker's processors to new levels.

On Tuesday, the US chip maker said in a blog post that the mobile platforms are engineered to give the Snapdragon 660 and 630 processors more relevance to today's advanced technologies, such as true-to-life photography and enhanced security.

Features originally only found in the 800 processor tier, including the Qualcomm Spectra camera ISP, Qualcomm Kryo CPU, and Hexagon Vector eXtensions (HVX), are now accessible by vendors relying on the Snapdragon 660 and 630 chips in the mid-tier market.

With the Snapdragon 660 and 630 processors and mobile platforms, customers can now take advantage of the 14-bit Qualcomm Spectra 160 ISP, which can capture up to 24 megapixels single ISP images with no lag, improved autofocus, and true-to-life color capture.

The Spectra also supports 4K video capture.

While the Snapdragon 630 supports dual cameras of up to 13 megapixels, the 660 can support up to 16 megapixels, alongside the Qualcomm Hexagon 680 DSP, which incorporates the HVX architecture module. HVX boosts camera performance by shouldering tasks usually left to a mobile device's main processor.

In addition, the new mobile platforms now support the Snapdragon Neural Processing Engine SDK, designed for integrating machine learning and deep neural networks into apps and software used for tasks such as facial recognition, object tracking, and voice detection.

The Snapdragon 660 and 630 platforms also include the Snapdragon X12 LTE modem, which supports speeds of up to 600 Mbps, advanced RF Front End support designed for mobile device use in remote areas and Bluetooth 5 compatibility.

The latter platform also caters for 2x2 MU-MIMO 802.11ac Wi-Fi, which improves Wi-Fi signals.

"This is especially beneficial in houses and offices made of thick brick and concrete walls, engineered to allow for a better connection in the entire space without coverage dead spots," Qualcomm says. "The 660 is designed to support up to 2X the data throughput, allowing users to enjoy unfettered video, faster downloads, and an excellent connectivity experience."

The Snapdragon 660's CPU and GPU have also been upgraded. The platform's octa-core Kryo 260 CPU is intended to offer a 20 percent improvement in performance over the Snapdragon 653, and the Adreno 512 GPU is meant to offer a 30 percent improvement over predecessors. The Snapdragon 630 platform is outfitted with the Adreno 508 GPU and an eight-core ARM Cortex A53 CPU.

Both platforms also come equipped with Qualcomm's mobile security suite, which includes support for biometric identification including fingerprint and iris scanning, as well as facial recognition and voice prints.

The Snapdragon 660 platform is available now while the 630 platform is expected to launch towards the end of the month.

See also: Qualcomm blocked Samsung from selling Exynos chips: KFTC

Back in November, Qualcomm revealed the Snapdragon 835 processor family, developed through a partnership with Samsung. The premium chipset range is designed with virtual reality support in mind, utilizing Samsung's 10-nanometer (nm) FinFET process technology to reduce both the size and power required.

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