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Qualcomm Snapdragon 480: the entry-level processor that wants to deliver on the promise of 5G for all prices

5G for everyone will be a promise fulfilled in 2021. The new connectivity is already available in a multitude of devices, but to date it had not reached the entry range . Those mobiles with Qualcomm 4XX series processors. With the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 480 that changes. Available in early 2021, Qualcomm’s new chipset will allow newer cheaper mobiles to support 5G networks.

The Snapdragon 480 is the first chipset of the 400 series with 5G, thanks to the inclusion of the X51 modem compatible with millimeter band and frequencies below 6 GHz. The new processor will be manufactured in 8 nanometers and will offer compatibility with 5G SA networks and NSA .

“Qualcomm delivers on the promise of making 5G accessible to all smartphone users,” said Cristiano Amon, president of Qualcomm. The new Snapdragon is Qualcomm’s cheapest chipset with 5G and a decisive bet so that mobiles between 100 and 200 euros have 5G connectivity as a base.

On the part of MediaTek, the most similar chipset was the Dimensity 700 , manufactured in 7 nanometers. To get an idea, devices like the OnePlus Nord N10 or the Xiaomi Redmi 9 Power incorporate 600 series chipsets. Future terminals that add to the Snapdragon 480, would be predictably below these.

5G connectivity is not the only novelty of this Snapdragon 480. Support for dual WiFi antennas, multi-user MIMO, Bluetooth 5.1 and aptX Adaptive, TrueWireless technologies and support for dual GNSS frequency are added, which promises better precision in the location. These are technologies that we have seen in mid-range chipsets, but which from this year will also be included in the company’s most basic family.

The Snapdragon 480 promises twice the CPU performance of the current Snapdragon 460 , a processor found in the Nokia 3.4 . We have an eight-core configuration , combining 2.0 GHz Cortex-A76 and 1.8 GHz Cortex-A55 .

For the GPU, Qualcomm opts for an Adreno 619 , which also promises twice the performance of the previous model. However, we don’t know yet how it compares to the Adreno 619 in the Snapdragon 750G. In terms of neural processing, the Snapdragon 480 and its Hexagon 686 DSP promise a 70% increase over the Snapdragon 460.

Qualcomm’s new entry-level chipset supports fast charging 4+ and FullHD displays at 120 Hz . Additionally, it supports UFS storage and LPDDR4X memories up to 2133 MHz.

For the photographic section, the Snapdragon 480 incorporates triple ISP. The processor is capable, as with the Snapdragon 888, to process three images at the same time. Although, as you would expect, the resolution is limited to 13 megapixels. In terms of sensor support, the chipset supports up to 64 megapixels or a 25 and 13 megapixel dual camera. Unfortunately, we still do not support 4K video recording in the input range.

Qualcomm expects the first phones with the Snapdragon 480 to be presented in early 2021 . It is unknown which will be the first model to be presented, but companies such as Nokia, OPPO, Xiaomi, Realme or Motorola have collaborated with Qualcomm in the past and have series that fit with the benefits of this new chipset.

John Hartshorne
Senior IT engineer by the UPM of training and technical editor by profession, I have been writing in print and online media since the late 90s.
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