Qualcomm unveils Snapdragon 6 Gen 1, 4 Gen 1 SoCs for future smartphones

Targeted at mid-range and budget segment

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After the premium 7 and 8 series, Qualcomm has now taken the wraps off the latest 6 and 4 series of smartphone chips. The newly announced Qualcomm Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 and 4 Gen 1 follow the company’s latest naming convention and are targeted at the mid-range and budget market, respectively. So, let us look at what the new chips from Qualcomm are capable of.

Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 Overview: 

We will start with the Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 which will power the mid-range phones of 2023. The new chip replaces the Snapdragon 695 5G and is built on a 4nm process. Qualcomm has not specified if it is Samsung or TSMC which is making the chip.

While its predecessor has a 2+6 CPU configuration, Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 shifts to a 4+4 arrangement. It has four Cortex-A78 performance cores paired with four Cortex-A55 efficiency cores. The two are clocked at 2.2GHz and 1.8GHz respectively. Technically, this should result in a higher multi-core performance on the Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 with Qualcomm claiming 40% better CPU performance over the 695 5G.

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Likewise, the graphics are also said to have been improved by 35%. However, Qualcomm has not spilled much detail about it. For the first time, Qualcomm is now offering LPDDR5 RAM compatibility on its 6 series of chips.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 Specs Features

On the photography front, Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 still has a similar triple ISP as its predecessor with support for up to 108MP cameras. That being said, it now supports computational HDR and can process 4K HDR videos at 30fps.

Moving on, Qualcomm has also made changes to the AI engine. The 7th Gen AI Engine boasts three times the performance of the last gen with a special focus on AI-based tasks. Qualcomm has even upgraded the wireless connectivity module on the Snapdragon 6 Gen 1. The chip integrates the Snapdragon X62 modem with support for sub-6 and mmWave 5G bands.

Also, the use of Qualcomm FastConnect 6700 means the Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 is the first chip in the series to support tri-band Wi-Fi 6E connectivity.

Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 vs Snapdragon 695

Snapdragon 6 Gen 1  Snapdragon 695 
Architecture  4nm 6nm
Performance/ big cores  4x Cortex-A78 (@2.2GHz) 2x Cortex-A78 (@2.2GHz)
Efficiency/ little cores 4x Cortex-A55 (@1.8GHz) 6x Cortex-A55 (@1.7GHz)
GPU Adreno (Unspecified) Adreno
Memory  LPDDR5 LPDDR4X
AI Engine  Hexagon Hexagon 686
Image Signal Processing  Spectra (Triple, up to 108MP) Spectra 346T (Triple, up to 108MP)
Integrated Modem  Snapdragon X62 Snapdragon X51
Wi-Fi/Bluetooth Subsystem  FastConnect 6700 (Wi-Fi 6E, Bluetooth 5.2) FastConnect 6100 (Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.1)
Fast Charging  Quick Charge 4+ Quick Charge 4+

Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 Availability 

Motorola has already confirmed that it will be using the Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 in one of its upcoming mid-range smartphones. However, it is not clear which phone the company is referring to and but it will be launching on Q1 of 2023.

Snapdragon 4 Gen 1 Overview:

This brings us to Snapdragon 4 Gen 1. This chip succeeds the Snapdragon 480 from last year and brings some notable changes. For starters, the new Snapdragon 4 Gen 1 is based on a more power efficient 6nm process from TSMC. It brings newer Cortex-A78 (@2.0GHz) cores along with Cortex-A75 cores in a 2+6 configuration. As per Qualcomm, this is enough to give the chip a 15% improvement over the Snapdragon 480.

There are no details about the new GPU but Qualcomm says it is 10% better than its predecessor. There is no change in the memory controller so budget smartphones in 2023 will still be shipping LPDDR4X RAM. Moving on, the triple ISP can now support a maximum resolution of up to 108MP, almost twice what its predecessor is capable of.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 4 Gen 1 Features Specs

Snapdragon 4 Gen 1 Vs Snapdragon 480

Snapdragon 4 Gen 1  Snapdragon 480 
Architecture  6nm 8nm
Performance/ big cores 2x Cortex-A78 (@2.0GHz) 2x Cortex-A76 (@2.0GHz)
Efficiency/ little cores  6x Cortex-A55 (@1.8GHz) 6x Cortex-A55 (@1.8GHz)
GPU  Adreno Adreno 619
Memory  LPDDR4X LPDDR4X
AI Engine  Hexagon Hexagon 686
Image Signal Processing  Spectra (Triple, up to 108MP) Spectra 345 (Triple, up to 64MP)
Integrated Modem  Snapdragon X51 Snapdragon X51
Wi-Fi/Bluetooth Subsystem  FastConnect 6200 (Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.2) FastConnect 6200 (Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.1)
Fast Charging  Quick Charge 4+ Quick Charge 4+

Snapdragon 4 Gen 1 Availability 

The upcoming iQOO Z6 Lite will be the first commercial smartphone with the Snapdragon 4 Gen 1 chip. It is expected to go official three weeks from now.

  • Meanwhile, check out our review of the Legion 5 Pro (2022).