Today Qualcomm announced three new SoCs in the mid and low-end Snapdragon lineup. At the lowest end we find the Snapdragon 425 offering a very frugal CPU configuration consisting of 4x Cortex A53's clocked in at 1.4GHz. The chipset is aimed at replacing the Snapdragon 410 and 412 and improves on them with an upgrade on the modem block as well as media decoder and encoder capabilities, now enabling 1080p HEVC decode and encode.

The Snapdragon 435 replaces the Snapdragon 430 which was only announced just a few months ago and also sees an improvement in the modem block used as we see it now going from UE Category 4 to UE Category 7. On the CPU side we see a 200MHz boost in the frequency of the faster of the two quad-core A53 clusters, now reaching 1.4GHz. In both the Snapdragon 425 and 435 we don't see a change in the GPU but it's possible clocks have changed; unfortunately details on the matter are still sparse. Both the Snapdragon 425 and 435 are manufactured on a "28nm LP" process but sadly it wasn't specified which foundry is manufacturing them.

New 2016 Mid & Low-End Snadpragons
SoC Snapdragon 425
Snapdragon 435
Snapdragon 625
CPU 4x A53 @ 1.4GHz 4x A53 @ 1.4GHz

4x A53 @ ? GHz
4x A53 @ 2.0GHz

4x A53 @ ? GHz
Memory 1x 32-bit @ 667MHz

5.3GB/s b/w
1x 32-bit @ 800MHz

6.4GB/s b/w
1x 32-bit @ 933MHz

7.45GB/s b/w
GPU Adreno 308 Adreno 505 Adreno 506
H.264 & HEVC (Decode)
H.264 & HEVC (Decode)
Camera/ISP Dual ISP
Dual ISP
Dual ISP
"X6 LTE" Cat. 4
150Mbps DL 75Mbps UL

2x20MHz C.A. 
(DL & UL)
"X8 LTE" Cat. 7
300Mbps DL 100Mbps UL

2x20MHz C.A. 
(DL & UL)
"X9 LTE" Cat. 7
300Mbps DL 150Mbps UL

2x20MHz C.A. 
(DL & UL)
Mfc. Process 28nm LP 14nm LPP

Most importantly comes the announcement of the Snapdragon 625. This is the successor to the Snapdragon 617 which along with the 615 has seen quite a lot of success in mid-range and budget smartphones. The CPUs remain two quad-core clusters of Cortex A53's but now the performance cluster is clocked at up to 2GHz representing a large increase to the 1.5GHz SoCs which the 625 is replacing. The GPU has also been upgraded from an Adreno 405 to a newer generation Adreno 506. The modem again has seen a slight upgrade from an X8 to an X9 block, allowing for an increase in the uplink performance if the network supports it.

The biggest surprise out of today's announcements is the fact that the Snapdragon 625 is manufactured on Samsung's/GlobalFoundry's 14nm LPP process. Qualcomm thus is the first vendor to announce a non-high-end SoC to use a new FinFET manufacturing process which is quite astonishing as I hadn't expected vendors be able to do the migration so early on in the technology's lifetime, which may be a positive indicator that we might be seeing FinFET adopted across the mid-range earlier than expected.

The new SoC should be sampling to vendors in mid-2016 with availability in commercial devices in the second half of 2016.

Source: Qualcomm

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  • jordanclock - Thursday, February 11, 2016 - link

    The 425 and 435 have the same memory specs, but they are showing different memory bandwidths, 5.3 vs 6.4. Is that right or a typo?
  • jjj - Thursday, February 11, 2016 - link

    425 supports LPDDR3 667MHz
  • Dobson123 - Thursday, February 11, 2016 - link

    In the table, you list 2x 32-bit @ 933MHz LPDDR3 for the 625. Shouldn't it have twice the memory bandwith?
  • zeeBomb - Thursday, February 11, 2016 - link

    Good point. If it's twice...letssss gooo homeee
  • LiverpoolFC5903 - Friday, February 12, 2016 - link

    The Snapdragon 625 is the most interesting one out of the three. Finally a decent A53 based option for the midrange from Qualcomm. The first one with Dual Channel memory which will make a significance difference. Is there an error in the listed bandwidth for the 625? Because I cant see it limited to 7.5 GB/s for a dual channel 32 bit RAM at 933mhz. Does not compute.

    ANyway, If the GPU is not gimped, it should be a good performing mid ranger with good battery life.

    The A53 core is quite a decent core with good balanced performance. The problem is companies are laoding them with low frequency desigs with poor single channel memory and terrible GPUs .

    I have a Helio X10 based phone (Mx5), which is a high clocked A53 design with dual channel RAM and a half decent GPU. Runs magnificently with no issues at all.Handles everything that is thrown at it.
  • zeeBomb - Friday, February 12, 2016 - link

    A DREAM phone of mine is the pro day Andrei and his group of friends will have a chance to review it!
  • LiverpoolFC5903 - Friday, February 12, 2016 - link

    You mean the Meizu Pro 5? That has the same Exynos as the one in the S6.
  • jjj - Friday, February 12, 2016 - link

    The Mediatek Helio P20 should have a GPU close enough in perf to the X10, without the throttling - the X10 does throttle - and overall with much much better power. Chances are this GPU will be around there too. Not that such a GPU is quite good enough for 1080p, it's somewhat passable though.
    Still SD650 , perf wise, is a lot more appealing and Xiaomi shoved it in a 150$ device already.
  • etamin - Friday, February 12, 2016 - link

    Why is Qualcomm continuing with the 2x quad-core configurations when the flagship 820 is regressing from it?
  • PrinceGaz - Friday, February 12, 2016 - link

    The article mentions Mid and Low-End Snapdragons. When I look at the table and see they all have A53's in them, that looks Low-End to me, even if they have eight of them.

    If they want to call it Mid-Range, stick at least a couple of A57's (or equivalent) in on a manufacturing process which means they won't throttle after a few seconds in a smartphone environment (it goes without saying that high-end now needs A72's or equivalent).

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