Qualcomm has refreshed its flagship chipset for smartphones with the new Snapdragon 888 Plus at MWC 2021 today. The Plus variant of the chipset will power flagship Android smartphones launching in the second half of the year.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 Plus Announced
As you would expect, Snapdragon 888 Plus is an upgraded version of the Snapdragon 888 chipset announced back in December last year. To be specific, Qualcomm has made minor improvements to the CPU and AI capabilities with the 888 Plus.
Notably, the single Cortex-X1 core is now clocked at 2.995 GHz, as opposed to the 2.84GHz clock speed on the regular Snapdragon 888 5G. The rest of the cores remain the same. You have three high-performance Cortex-A78 cores clocked at 2.4GHz and four low-power Cortex-A55 cores clocked at 1.8GHz. Qualcomm has not upgraded the GPU with this refresh and offers the same Adreno 660 GPU.
Instead of the GPU, Qualcomm seems to have focused more on the AI capabilities of the chipset with an upgraded AI Engine. The 6th-Gen Qualcomm AI Engine with Hexagon 780 processor now offers up to 32 TOPS (Tera Operations Per Second), which is over 20% improvement when compared to 26 TOPS on the 888 5G.
Apart from these changes, the Snapdragon 888+ remains largely unchanged from its predecessor. That includes the Snapdragon X60 5G modem, Spectra 580 Image Signal Processor, and maximum display support of 4K at 60Hz and QHD+ at a 144Hz refresh rate.
According to Qualcomm, popular smartphone brands including Asus, Honor, Motorola, Vivo, and Xiaomi are working to launch devices powered by the new chipset. You could expect devices with Snapdragon 888 Plus to arrive in the third quarter of 2021.