Qualcomm Announces Snapdragon 870 5G

Posted on January 19, 2021 by Paul Thurrott in Hardware, Mobile, Android with 4 Comments

Qualcomm today announced its Snapdragon 870 5G Mobile Platform, which it describes as a follow-on to the Snapdragon 865 Plus, the mid-2020 flagship chipset, itself a follow-on to the late-2019 Snapdragon 865 flagship.

Confused? You should be: Qualcomm unveiled the Snapdragon 888 in December as its latest flagship mobile chipset.

“Building upon the success of Snapdragon 865 and 865 Plus, the new Snapdragon 870 was designed to address OEM and mobile industry requirements,” Qualcomm vice president Kedar Kondap noted in a prepared statement. “Snapdragon 870 will power a selection of flagship devices from key customers including Motorola, iQOO, OnePlus, OPPO, and Xiaomi.”

That’s obviously a list of mostly-Asian companies—three of them are Chinese—and maybe that’s the point. Qualcomm’s chipsets are a lot of things, but one of the chief complaints is that they’re too expensive. And with the Snapdragon 870, Qualcomm has a more iterative leap over 2020’s chipsets that can sell for less than the 888.

Still, this seems somewhat unprecedented. Typically, Qualcomm has released new chipsets at different performance tiers, with its 600- and 700-series chips providing less expensive—and less capable—options for use in less expensive devices.

Devices based on Snapdragon 870 will be announced in the first quarter of 2021, Qualcomm says. You can learn more about this chipset from the Qualcomm website

Tagged with , ,

Join the discussion!


Don't have a login but want to join the conversation? Become a Thurrott Premium or Basic User to participate

Comments (4)

4 responses to “Qualcomm Announces Snapdragon 870 5G”

  1. madthinus

    Key differences 888 is 5nm which is still ramping up and probably in short supply from TSMC due to Apple. 870 is 7nm, which is in better supply as Apple is shifting to 5nm. So this is about price and chips availability.

  2. rosyna

    The three companies listed in the PR are all Chinese-owned: Motorola (owned by Lenovo), BBK Electronics, and Xiaomi. Meaning Qualcomm is advertising this 870 to exactly one manufacturing market. A faster chip without having to license additional patents.

  3. JH_Radio

    What is next. 3NM? 1NM? how much smaller can these chips actually get?