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Daily Authority: 🐉 The chip to power 2023 Android flagships is here!

We decode the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip for you. Also read about Musk's latest Twitter goof-up, and more tech news of the day.
By
November 16, 2022
Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 on phone
Qualcomm

🤑 Good morning, Daily Authority readers. I just got up to speed with the whole FTX cryptocurrency mayhem and the story of Sam Bankman-Fried. Gosh! is it a complete cluster you-know-what! For those of you who still don’t know what’s happening, here’s a BBC article that does a great job of explaining it all. Meanwhile, here’s what else happened in the tech world while you were away.

The latest chip to power 2023 flagship Android phones

Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 reference phone grey background
Qualcomm

Qualcomm has announced the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip. The silicon will power almost all major Android smartphones in 2023, starting most likely with the Samsung Galaxy S23 series. In fact, we hear that Samsung won’t use Exynos chips on its upcoming flagships at all, relying only on the new Snapdragon. So what’s changed, and what are the upgrades you’re getting? Here’s a complete lowdown.

Ray tracing is here

  • From updated graphics to improved connectivity standards, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 makes for a promising smartphone chip.
  • Qualcomm jumped on the ray tracing bandwagon this year. The tech is used for creating fancy lighting effects, shadows, and reflections in games.
  • The Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 now supports ray-box, ray-triangle, and bounding volume hierarchical (BVH) intersections, seemingly making it a more advanced implementation than ray tracing support we’ve seen from other mobile platforms.
  • We’ll have to wait and see how many mobile games adopt ray tracing now that the Qualcomm chip supports it.
  • Meanwhile, the new Adreno GPU on the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 also promises 25% faster performance than the graphics on the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip and 40% better power efficiency from the Kyro CPU.

A unique CPU layout

  • The Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 still packs eight total cores and is built on a 4nm process.
  • If you understand CPU layouts, the chip is now packed with a single Prime Arm Cortex-X3 clocked at 3.19GHz, two Cortex A715 performance cores at 2.8GHz, two older Cortex A710 performance cores at 2.8GHz, and three Cortex A510 efficiency cores at 2.0GHz.
  • So essentially, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 swaps one of the small efficiency cores for an extra medium performance core.
  • The change brings new processing power thanks to the extra medium core, but the real reason for the new layout is that Qualcomm isn’t ready to give up on 32-bit app support just yet.
  • While the pair of Cortex A715 cores support 64-bit apps only, the chip keeps the door open for 32-bit with the Cortex A710 cores.
  • Essentially, 64-bit apps are faster and more secure than 32-bit apps. They also help free up RAM on your phone.
  • Did you know the Pixel 7 is the first Android phone to support only 64-bit apps?

New AI abilities

  • Each year, Qualcomm equips its flagship Snapdragon chips with more AI abilities, and the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is no different.
  • Many of the improvements are powered by the updated Hexagon processor.
  • You can now boost AI performance without also boosting other components, such as graphics, saving some power in the process.
  • You should also notice much quicker segmentation (object identification) and AI RAW processing from the camera, in what Qualcomm dubs its Cognitive ISP.

There’s a lot more to talk about regarding the new Qualcomm processor. My colleague Ryan Haines does an excellent job of summing up the top 5 things you need to know about the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2. You can go read that summary for some quick insights. I promise you a good laugh when you read the bit about connectivity improvements on the chip.

🍎 Not a cult: Apple fan pays $218,750 for Steve Jobs’ grubby sandals (Android Authority).

🐦 Personal playground vibes — Musk delays Twitter’s paid verification service to November 29 (Android Authority).

Wednesday Weirdness

Portrait Woman Photo Editing

As Vice puts it very aptly, the AI image-generated crazy has entered the next phase of absurdity. You can now create fake profile pictures that make you look good on dating apps and social media.

  • For $19, a service called PhotoAI will use 12-20 of your mediocre, poorly-lit selfies to generate a batch of fake photos.
  • The images will be tailored for the platform of your choice.
  • A LinkedIn package will generate photos of you wearing a suit or business attire, while the Tinder plan promises to make you “the best you’ve ever looked.”
  • After submitting your photos, the site promises to return results in 12 hours.
  • According to the site’s privacy policy, the AI model used to generate your photos is also deleted after seven days.
  • Motherboard tested the Tinder package and found that while the photos looked impressive at first glance, they were not entirely convincing.
  • In some instances, the photos were alternatingly hilarious and horrifying.
  • Would you buy a service that creates fake pictures of you? Let us know in the comments section.
  • Until then, you can try these great photo editing apps to make your pictures look the way you want.

Have a great rest of the day,

Adamya Sharma, Editor.