Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 Launched As a Reiterative Snapdragon 865 With a Boosted Prime Core, OnePlus, Xiaomi, Motorola and More to Get First Dibs

Everything in the Snapdragon 870 is the same as the Snapdragon 865 except for the peak CPU speed.

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For the first time ever, Qualcomm is branching off its flagship Snapdragon 8-series into multiple lineups. After being rumoured for a while now, the San-Diego based chipmaker unveiled the Snapdragon 870, an upgrade over the previous Snapdragon 865/865+ but sits just below the Snapdragon 888 launched back in December. As a follow up to the Snapdragon 865, the Snapdragon 870 is based on the same process node, features the same 5G modem and uses the same Kryo cores and Adreno GPUs. Only, there is a marginal uptick in the clock speeds which should result in faster performance, as compared to last year’s Android flagships.

Snapdragon 870 launched: What are the major changes?

Specs Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Qualcomm Snapdragon 865+
Manufacturing Process 7nm+ 7nm+ 7nm+
CPU Octa-core (1×3.2 GHz Kryo 585 & 3×2.42 GHz Kryo 585 & 4×1.8 GHz Kryo 585) Octa-core (1×2.84 GHz Kryo 585 & 3×2.42 GHz Kryo 585 & 4×1.8 GHz Kryo 585) Octa-core (1×3.1 GHz Kryo 585 & 3×2.42 GHz Kryo 585 & 4×1.8 GHz Kryo 585)
GPU Adreno 650 Adreno 650 Adreno 650
RAM LPDDR5 Up to 2750MHz LPDDR5 Up to 2750MHz LPDDR5 Up to 2750MHz
Storage UFS 3.1 UFS 3.1 UFS 3.1
Display Up to QHD+ @ 144Hz Up to QHD+ @ 144Hz Up to QHD+ @ 144Hz
Camera Support Up to 200MP Single Capture Up to 200MP Single Capture Up to 200MP Single Capture

Qualcomm’s strategy of iterating its offerings with minimal tweaks to the CPU clock speeds has now penetrated its flagship lineup. The only significant improvement in the Snapdragon 870 is a boosted prime core. The Kryo 585 Prime core in the Snapdragon 870 goes up to 3.2GHz, which is much faster than the 2.84 GHz limit on the Snapdragon 865, but is actually quite close to the peak 3.1GHz clock speed of the Snapdragon 865+ that powers smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 and the ASUS ROG Phone 3.

Other than this, everything about the Snapdragon 870 is the same as the previous Snapdragon 865. It has the same Snapdragon X55 discrete 5G modem, the Adreno 650 GPU, 5th-gen AI engine and more like the chipset it plans to replace. So we wonder, what exactly is being upgraded here except for a marginal boost in CPU speed?

Snapdragon 870-powered flagships from Motorola, iQOO, OnePlus, OPPO and Xiaomi expected

The Snapdragon 870, as rumoured earlier will likely make its debut on the Motorola Edge S. But Qualcomm said other major Chinese smartphone makers will also launch devices powered by the Snapdragon 870, alongside flagships with Snapdragon 888 under the hood. This includes the likes of Xiaomi, iQOO, OPPO, OnePlus, and Motorola.

Qualcomm said smartphones powered by the Snapdragon 870 will start releasing in first quarter of 2021.

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