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Qualcomm Intros Snapdragon S4 Pro SoC and Three New Gobi Modem Chipsets Supporting LTE Advanced and HSPA+ - Look Out NVIDIA

February 28, 2012

 Qualcomm, the world-leading wireless telecommunications research and development company and the world’s largest fabless chip supplier, has introduced a newly improved version of the Snapdragron S4 chip as well as three new Gobi modem chipsets at the Mobile World Congress today in Barcelona, Spain. The newly improved Snapdragron S4 SoC, dubbed as the “Snapdragron S4 Pro”, takes the ordinary dual-core Snapdragon S4 MSM8960 chip used in the HTC One X/S and the Asus Padfone to a whole new different level. So what’s so interesting about the S4 Pro?

First and foremost, this SoC has a blazing fast graphics processor, thanks to the totally revamped Adreno 320 GPU – a modified version of the Adreno 225. That means that the S4 Pro is capable of supporting high resolution displays while improving its performance four times more. It also introduces new APIs for 3D graphics, Open CL and more. Additionally, Qualcomm mentioned that Adreno 320 will also include dedicated hardware to accelerate Windows while supporting the top game engines like Epic and Unity.

“As a result of strong customer demand for Snapdragon S4 processors, we’ve added a new Pro version of MSM8960 to continue delivering the highest performing mobile processors in the industry,” said Cristiano Amon, senior vice president of product management, Qualcomm. “By delivering the S4 Pro processor in 2012, we are fulfilling our promise that Snapdragon processors will remain the industry’s barometer for excellence in mobile computing while helping our customers bring the most innovative smartphones and tablets to market.”

The Snapdragon S4 Pro will be arriving sometime in the middle of this year. There are more than 340 devices in the mobile market today running Qualcomm’s Snapdragron processors. With 400 devices more currently in the development stages, it’s pretty interesting to see that number rise up this year. On the other hand, Qualcomm also announced the release of its next-generation Gobi modem chipsets that will be the first to support both LTE Advanced and HSPA+.

The aforementioned 28-nanometer third-generation Gobi chips, namely, the MDM8225, MDM9225 and the MDM9625 are compatible with today’s gold standard data networks. Accordingly, the MDM8225 chip will support UMTS-only, the MDM9225 chipset can support both LTE and UMTS and lastly, the MDM 9625 chip supports LTE, UMTS and CDMA2000. As a way of measuring these chips, both the MDM9225 and the MDM9625 can reportedly reach speeds up to 150Mbps, thanks to its support for LTE Category 4.

Moreover, it is important to note that the MDM9225 and the MDM9625 are for now, the only mobile broadband chipsets in the planet that are currently supporting carrier aggregation – a technology that combines and mixes multiple radio channels across bands, thereby increasing user data rates and enabling Category 4 capabilities while reducing latency at the same time. Now, original equipment manufacturers can create devices that can harness the power of LTE Advanced networks to their full extent.

“Our newest generation of Gobi modem chipsets will allow mobile device OEMs to design products that can operate on nearly any mobile broadband network worldwide,” said Cristiano Amon, senior vice president of product management, Qualcomm. “In addition to supporting the latest mobile broadband technologies, these chipsets improve over Qualcomm’s previous 7-mode 28nm LTE chipsets (MDM9x15) by offering a reduction in power consumption and overall board area, enabling OEMs to design smaller, sleeker devices with longer battery life.”

Competition continues to intensify between Qualcomm and NVIDIA. The real question is – would you choose a dual core over a quad core, if the benchmarks and reviews backed it up? We did a comprehensive breakdown on Qualcomm’s S4 vs Tegra 3 in this piece. Check it out, you’ll be surprised. Qualcomm FTW?