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Qualcomm may release multiple 'Lite' versions of the Snapdragon 875
- Leaker Digital Chat Station says OPPO executives talked about ‘Lite’ versions of the upcoming Snapdragon 875.
- Another unannounced chip, the Snapdragon 860, was also mentioned at the meeting.
- OnePlus CEO Pete Lau was there as well.
Qualcomm may announce multiple variants of its next flagship chipset, according to Digital Chat Station. The leaker reports OPPO executives talked about “Lite” variants of the upcoming processor during a recent meeting. They say those same executives may have also mentioned the Snapdragon 860.
“If I didn’t hear incorrectly, the Snapdragon 860 was discussed during OPPO’s communication event,” said Digital Chat Station in a tweet we asked a native speaker to translate (you can see the Google Translate version below). “The Snapdragon 875 series could also have ‘lite’ versions.”
Digital Chat Station mentions two OPPO executives, Liu Bo and Li Zi Gui, were at the meeting. More interestingly, OnePlus CEO Liu Zuohu — or Pete Lau, as we know him here in the west — was also present. For those who don’t know, China’s BBK Electronics owns both brands.
There’s a lot to unpack in that single tweet. The more straightforward piece here relates to the Snapdragon 875. One significant issue with Qualcomm’s current flagship silicon is that it’s expensive for device manufacturers to include their phones because the chip doesn’t feature an integrated modem. If they want to include the 855 in their handsets, companies like OnePlus have to add Qualcomm’s 5G-capable X55 modem, making its phones cost more. If the report is accurate, more affordable variants of the 875 could help partly address that issue.
Less straightforward is the mention of the Snapdragon 860. We don’t know the context in which Lau and OPPO executives discussed the chip. Websites such as Gizmochina have interpreted the sentence as evidence Qualcomm may announce an 860 chipset, but there are a couple of reasons that doesn’t seem likely.
If Qualcomm sticks to its usual release cadence, it will announce its next flagship chip at the end of the year. That doesn’t leave much time for the company to push out another variant of the 865, particularly if it plans to release “lite” versions of the Snapdragon 875. Without specifics, it’s also hard to say how the 860 would differ from the 865. The model number suggests the 860 would be a more affordable version of the 865, but Qualcomm already offers the 765G as an alternative to its top-of-the-line chip.
As usual, take all of the above with an extra dose of skepticism. Digital Chat Station has a decent track record. They’ve shared some credible information in the past, but they’ve been wrong as well. Less than any of the specifics, what’s probably worthwhile to take from this report is that it seems Qualcomm is being reactive to the shortcomings of the 865. For what it’s worth, Qualcomm chose not to comment on the report when we reached out.