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Qualcomm details Snapdragon S4 line-up inc. quad-core offerings

by Alistair Lowe on 5 June 2012, 10:18

Tags: Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM)

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With all the Windows 8 RT devices flying around at Computex, and with NVIDIA already demonstrating its Tegra 3 running the latest Windows platform, Qualcomm, not wishing to be left out, has revealed details of its full Snapdragon S4 line-up, including its quad-core offerings.

The line-up is split into four classes, the S4 Prime, S4 Pro, S4 Plus and S4 Play:

The S4 Prime focuses on Smart TVs and DVRs, with a focus on A/V capabilities. One member is the S4 Prime MPQ8064, a 1.5GHz quad-core variant, featuring Adreno 320 graphics and additional A/V hardware.

The S4 Pro clearly has its sights set on Windows 8 RT, with all members of the line-up featuring Adreno 320 graphics backed by support for OpenCL to take advantage of the new GPGPU compute architecture offered by the 3xx series. Qualcomm makes a rather interesting note, that its camera interface can work seamlessly with the Adreno 320 to offer powerful image-processing capabilities, ideal for mobile integrations of light-field cameras... hang on? Didn't Steve Jobs once say he'd like to see the tech on an iPhone? We wonder what this could be about. The line-up consists of the APQ8064 1.5GHz quad-core SoC along with the Pro version of the well-known MSM8960, featuring upgraded graphics.

The S4 Plus categorises the firm's current line-up, found in mobiles world-wide, featuring integrated 3G and 4G connectivity. Qualcomm makes no specific mention to the capabilities of the line-up, though it's reasonable to assume they're all dual-core SoCs featuring Adreno 225 or entry-level 305 graphics cores.

The S4 Play aims for high-volume mid-range smartphones and, as such, features only the MSM8625 and MSM8225, both of which are clocked at a lower 1.2GHz, feature Adreno 203 graphics and integrated 3G. The designs are pin-compatible and software with Snapdragon S1 CPUs, making the S4 Play line-up a drop-in replacement, allowing the firm to move its focus away from the S1 series.

There's no doubt in anyone's mind that the S4 Pro series is going to wipe away current competition, with dual-core offerings already on par with the Tegra 3 and Exynos 4 quad-core alternatives, however, we wonder when we'll first be spotting a quad-core S4 out in the open, as demonstrations at Computex are still running on SoCs from the S4 Plus series; in which case, the S4 Pro may have Samsung's Exynos 5 to contend with and, NVIDIA's Tegra 4 won't be too far away.

Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 line-up

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S4 Plus and WP8 for me, I think..