Apple made headlines last year by introducing the first 64-bit mobile chipset in the iPhone 5S and iPad Air. The company said the move to 64-bit would allow for better performance while retaining backwards compatibility with 32-bit apps. Android device manufacturers were a little slower on the draw, but now they're starting to introduce their own 64-bit chips.
Qualcomm announced its next 64-bit chipset today with the Snapdragon 615. This particular chip also has the distinction of being the world's first octa-core 64-bit mobile chip which will allow it to run more applications at once thanks to its large number of cores.
Alongside the 615, Qualcomm also announced the Snapdragon 610 as its mid-tier quad-core 64-bit SoC. Both chipsets sport Qualcomm's latest LTE modems which allows for manufacturers to outfit their devices with a single chip that will work across all markets and LTE bands. That alone is a major improvement over previous devices which would sometimes require a different chip for each region due to differences in wireless frequencies.
Qualcomm notes that both chipsets will also sport the Adreno 405 GPU. The Adreno 400 series has so far only been seen in Qualcomm's high-tier Snapdragon 800 SoCs. The adoption of the Adreno 400 series in the Snapdragon 615 and 610 ensures that these mid-tier SoCs will support all of the latest mobile graphics technologies while offering better performance than previous Snapdragon 600 series SoCs.
“Qualcomm Technologies is redefining the user experience for high-end mobile devices by amassing the unparalleled trilogy of an industry-leading LTE modem, 64-bit multicore processing, and superior multimedia,” said Murthy Renduchintala, executive vice president, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., and co-president, QCT. “64-bit processing capabilities are now an industry requirement for this tier, and we are meeting our customers’ needs with both octa- and quad-core configurations, as well as bringing our superior Adreno 405 graphics and powerful suite of connectivity technologies to the Snapdragon 600 family of chipsets.”
So, when we still start seeing devices with these SoCs in them? Qualcomm says that it will begin sampling both the 610 and 615 in the third quarter of this year while the first Snapdragon 615 devices will start shipping in the fourth quarter.
Image via Qualcomm