Electronics

Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 898 May Turn Your Phone Into a Portable Furnace

By Bill Toulas / August 13, 2021

Qualcomm’s upcoming top-ranger, the Snapdragon 898 (or possibly 895), has had its first benchmark tests leaked, and it looks like it’ll bring a whopping 20% performance boost over its predecessor, the Snapdragon 888. According to rumors that surfaced in Chinese sources, though, these tests showed that the new chip is running very hot, even more than the 898 which is severely plagued by overheating issues. This doesn’t sound very promising for the Samsung-made 4nm processor, and it could mean we’ll get to see it only inside bulky devices that feature a beefy cooling system.

This year, many smartphone manufacturers opted to use the Snapdragon 870, or even the 865 for their mid to top-range devices, as these processors are now cheaper and yet perfectly capable of handling the vast majority of today’s use-case scenarios. The Snapdragon 888 - and now the 898 - are very special chips whose processing power can only be put into action in the context of a gaming-focused device. All others report severe overheating and throttling, even forcing some manufacturers like OnePlus to introduce proactive throttling via updates to keep the phones safe to use.

With Snapdragon 888, it became clear that Qualcomm’s “cream of the crop” isn’t suitable for slim and sexy smartphones anymore but should only be used in actively cooled devices. A rumor that came out in May blamed Samsung’s design approach, which wasn’t very energy efficient, causing the overheating trouble. According to the same rumors, Qualcomm would assign the manufacturing of its next flagship chip to TSMC, but from what was made known now, Samsung is still the one in charge of making the Snapdragon 898.

At this point, no more details have surfaced, and these tests may not reflect the reality in the final product. We will get to know more about the upcoming Qualcomm chip by November - or December, at the latest - when we expect the American chipmaker to present the next generation of its top-ranger.

Until then, you can munch on the 888 Plus, the overclocked version that Qualcomm announced last month and which is currently available only on the Xiaomi Mi Mix 4. ASUS will possibly also release a refreshed ROG Phone 5 version to feature the new chip, so if you’re into mobile gaming, that would be your most powerful choice right now.



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