Qualcomm announces 5G-ready Snapdragon 855

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"That's the mobile processor that will be in the 5G smartphone as we launch 5G", Qualcomm President Cristiano Amon said Tuesday at the Snapdragon Technology Summit in Maui, Hawaii.

The newly announced Snapdragon 855 also features the worlds first ultrasonic under the display fingerprint sensor solution which Qualcomm calls 3D Sonic Super. The chip maker says that 2019 will be all about 5G and most flagships or premium smartphones will be powered by Snapdragon 855. AT&T, Verizon and Sprint have announced their plans for limited 5G deployment in several cites. And they haven't had a chance since 4G, so get ready for your next phone to have a big 5G logo slapped on it, because MORE GEES.

In the same way that 4G made me shrug at the first point of the rollout in the United Kingdom, I picked up an Android smartphone based on the device's capabilities rather than the network since I knew that mobile networks close to home were relatively pointless.

Amon spoke about how 5G enables new experiences and how the next decade of wireless connectivity is poised to move mobile technology beyond the smartphone and into new industries such as manufacturing, transportation, healthcare, agriculture, cities, and retail. There's a computer vision ISP (image signal processor) for better photography in there, too, as well as a fourth generation AI engine.

Qualcomm stated that the phones with Snapdragon 855 Mobile Platform would be released in H1 2019.

The GPU promises a performance boost of 20% over Qualcomm's current offering, too, while also receiving new features such as support for Vulkan 1.1 support, HDR10+ (a first for mobile), and physically-based rendering, all of which should contribute to more realistic-looking games, according to Qualcomm. This sensor can also read your finger when it is wet, oily or has anything else - something that regular sensors are unable to do right now. Additionally, Qualcomm also alluded that the Snapdragon 855 performs 2x faster than the Huawei Kirin 980, and "significantly faster" than the Apple A12.

Lastly, a 3D Sonic Sensor is capable of reading and authenticating a fingerprint even when there are obstructions like dirt and oil on the fingerprint. No details about the chip have yet been revealed (other than it's faster and better than the last chip, which duh), but we expect that will change tomorrow, given the day's keynote will have the 855 as its focus. Let us know any questions you have on the SD855 below and we'll put them to the Qualcomm team!