Qualcomm announces its new processor, Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G. Qualcomm presents its second generation processors for Windows, with the 5G connection as the flagship of productivity.
In recent years, the ARM architecture has evolved so much, as well as the performance of the low-power processors, they are already in a position to compete in performance with the classic Intel X86 architecture on Windows. At least that is what the theory says, because in practice this has not happened yet. Qualcomm wants to demonstrate that it is possible with its new second generation processor for PC, Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G.
There are already some laptops with the first Snapdragon 8cx running with Windows, such as the Samsung Galaxy Book S, but their performance and compatibility did not convince.
If companies like Apple are willing to risk everything by changing the Intel processors in Macs for their own processors with ARM architecture, it is certainly because the performance is there. And that is what Qualcomm wants to demonstrate with the new Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G, with the 5G connection and the enormous autonomy as the main weapons.
Qualcomm is a manufacturer specialized in processors for mobile devices, especially smartphones, and all that experience is deposited in the new Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G, with its philosophy: always on, always connected. Like a mobile, laptops with this processor do not need to be turned off. They remain in a state of rest and turn on instantly when we open the lid, always being connected to the Internet. It is an important concept in the new era of home-office workers, where at any time you have to make a video call or send a project to the boss.
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Another advantage of the Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G is its autonomy. With a TDP of just 7W, it can work up to 23 hours straight without recharging. And if it is only used once in a while, the autonomy increases to several days.
These are features that were already in the first Snapdragon 8cx, that’s why the new Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G brings new ones. Let’s see it in detail.
Qualcomm Snapdragon X55 modem with 5G connection reaches peaks of up to 7GB/s in download and 3GB/s in data upload, and the WiFi 6 connection (802.11 ax) with peak speeds of 9GB/s, where we have a laptop that not only connects instantly to the Internet, but can do so at speeds that until recently were not even achieved by working locally in the office.
Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G also integrates new enterprise-level security measures, such as facial recognition and fingerprint reader, Windows Hypervisor to run virtual machines (simulate a computer that only resides in memory), and Windows Secure-Code, which protects the PC. through virtualization and firmware.
Can Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G compete with Intel?
Beyond its functions, many users will be especially interested in how this new ARM processor performs compared to traditional Intel models.
At the moment we only have the data provided by Qualcomm itself. It claims to be 18% faster than a 10th Gen Intel Core i5 with a 15W TDP, and 51% faster if that processor had the same TDP as the Snapdragon, 7W.
In performance per watt, the Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 is 39% more productive than the aforementioned 10th Gen Intel Core i5:
They are promising data, but as always we will have to wait for the benchmarks with the final hardware and real applications.
At the level of specifications, at the moment the only thing we know is that it has 8 Qualcomm Kryo 495 cores at a speed not provided, with 64-bit technology and 7 nm lithography. It uses a DirectX 12 compatible Adreno GPU. It accepts 8-channel LPDDR4 memory at 2,133MHz.
At the video level, it offers support for up to two 4K monitors, and can play video at 4K and 120 fps. Accepts one 32MP sensor camera, or two 16MP cameras. You can capture 4K HDR video at 30 fps, and record in slow motion at 720p and 480 fps.
Supports 2G, 3G, 4G, 5G, WiFi 6 MIMO 2×2, Bluetooth 5.1, Beidou, Galileo, GLONASS, GPS, QZSS, SBAS, and fast charging via Qualcomm Quick Charge 4.0.
It also debuts video streaming hardware acceleration, optimized for video calls, and an echo and noise cancellation system in the voices of the aforementioned video calls, called Qualcomm Aqstic.
Finally, the Qualcomm AI Engine integrates artificial intelligence into system functions related to smart camera, computer control with voice, security, etc.