For those not in the know, Project Tango is a Google initiative that seeks to bring specialized tech to smartphones that will allow them to have improved augmented reality capabilities. Although we had previously heard that Google was in cahoots with Movidius to bring Tango to the commercial market, Qualcomm has revealed that their technology will be what powers the Lenovo Phab 2 Pro, the first Project Tango device for the masses.
What’s more, Qualcomm is boasting that they’ve made improvements to their chips that enable them to run all the powerful functions of Tango with a less than 10 percent CPU overhead, compared to a normal app. Considering Tango employs three different cameras (an RGB camera, a tracking camera, and a depth sensor) while rendering live augmented reality on your phone’s display, this is a pretty impressive feat. Additionally, the company says that these computations are relatively easy on your battery life.
The original glimpses we got of Project Tango devices used an additional Movidius computer vision chip, but it looks like the Lenovo Phab 2 Pro will lean solely on its Qualcomm Snapdragon 652 SoC to get the job done.
Qualcomm says they’ve achieved this mean leanness via software optimizations to their “Snapdragon Heterogeneous Processing Architecture,” meaning upper-end Snapdragon 800 and 600-series processors will be able to be used on Tango-ready devices without the need for a radically new chip. The company says they’ve been developing this Tango tech in tandem with Google over the last year and a half.
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