Qualcomm Inc. on Tuesday announced a new smartphone chip with enhanced gaming and photo capabilities, which will be manufactured by Samsung’s chip manufacturing division (Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.).
The 5G chip, called the Snapdragon 888, is at the top of Qualcomm’s range of mobile phone processors. Smartphones containing the chip should be released in the first quarter of next year.
The chip is expected to be used in high-end Android phones from Xiaomi Corp. and LG Electronics Inc.
This is the first time that Samsung, which competes fiercely with Taiwan’s Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), will manufacture Qualcomm’s flagship chip using its new 5-nanometer smartphone chip. The South Korean company won a contract for 5G chips from Qualcomm earlier this year.
Apple’s new iPhones also use a chip made with 5-nanometer technology, but analysts believe the iPhone chips were manufactured by TSMC.
This year’s chip is focused on improving overall performance, said Alex Katuzian, senior vice president of mobile, computing and infrastructure projects at Qualcomm, quoted Reuters.
The new chip can process 120 high-resolution photos per second, while the chip’s new artificial intelligence processor will allow the software to select the top five photos and combine them into a single final image.
Katuzian said orders for the Snapdragon 888 will not be split between Samsung and TSMC, adding that Samsung is best suited for the chip in terms of design needs and deadlines.
“I think it would be very bad if you had to split your resources between two different types of output on a given chip,” he said. “We’re working hard with the manufacturers and we’re very, very confident about what we want to use a few years before the chip comes out.”