Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) kicked off its keynote at the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show by unveiling the Snapdragon 810 flagship SoC.
This announcement came just hours after LG (KRX:066570) announced the G Flex 2, a 5.5-inch smartphone with a curved display and the Snapdragon 810 inside.
The SoC, which will find its way into many of 2015’s flagship smartphones, was first announced last year. Qualcomm gave the world a sneak peak of the chip in December, though it chose CES for the first big official unveil of the chip. Like many other vendors, Qualcomm is choosing to use a Big.LITTLE configuration for the chips packing together ARM Cortex A57 and A53 cores in a power efficient setup. As far as a GPU goes, Qualcomm continues to use its homemade Adreno 430 GPU which has a full spectrum of APIs such as DirectX 11.2, OpenCL 1.2, and OpenGL ES 3.1.
Like other chip vendors, Qualcomm is looking beyond the traditional tablet and smartphone markets for this chip. During the keynote Qualcomm highlighted potential use cases for car infotainment and IoT. One of the vehicles that will be powered by the upcoming chip is Cadillac’s new XTS due out next year.
“Over the course of our history, we’ve invested $33 billion in R&D,” said Qualcomm’s president Derek Aberle on stage. “Many invest in R&D, but we do it differently. We anticipate industry trends before anybody knows they’re coming, making fundamental investments and driving the industry forward.”
While Qualcomm’s press conference didn’t have anything too new in the SoC space for those that watch the company closely, Qualcomm chose instead to highlight the investments it has made in getting its technology virtually everywhere from IoT, wearables to automotive. Unlike Nvidia (NASDAQ: NVDA), which had the first press conference of CES, Qualcomm has a solid track record of getting its silicon in products.
Qualcomm has its competitors, but none have the momentum that it does. For all Nvidia’s bluster about the speed of Tegra, the company doesn’t have the record of hardware wins that it should. If Qualcomm can get the momentum for Internet of Things and automotive, it will be a real challenge for its competitors to reach its level.