Qualcomm's Snapdragon 865 SoC is not the top choice for Google, LG phones: Here's why
Shubham Verma March 25, 2020
Google and LG are the latest smartphone brands to have ditched the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 mobile platform on their upcoming phones. The top-class System on Chip, Snapdragon 865 from Qualcomm is not the top choice among several OEMs, thanks to its high costs. While manufacturers such as Samsung, Xiaomi, and Realme have managed to pack their smartphones with the pricey chipset from Qualcomm, Google and LG are going for alternatives for 5G support on their smartphones, making compromises on the performance.
According to a XDA Developers that managed to explore the Android code repository in January, found three devices with cheeky codenames - Sunfish', Redfish', and Bramble.' While the first one belonged to the Pixel 4a, the last two are for the Pixel 5 and Pixel 5XL smartphones that will be launched in the latter half of the year. In the report, the publication mentioned that Pixel 5 and Piel 5 XL have been spotted with Snapdragon 765G instead of the Snapdragon 865 processor, which could be a huge trade-off in terms of performance. While the 5G network support will be ensured with the Snapdragon 765G processor, it will not deliver the flagship-level performance as Snapdragon 865 would.
Similarly, LG has been reported to be using the Snapdragon 765G processor on the upcoming LG G9 ThinQ. The G-series has so far enjoyed the cream-layer of internals, but LG is choosing to play things differently this time. The South Korean company is reportedly downranking the G-series to the sub-premium range while the V-series will continue to enjoy its premium status only in select markets. The categorisation of smartphones under both G-series and V-series will definitely impact what internals LG would go for on each smartphone. Since LG G9 will suit to the sub-premium range, LG has opted for the Snapdragon 765G processor, which will not only be economical but also provide the phone with necessary architecture for using 5G networks.
Qualcomm's Snapdragon 865 processor is undoubtedly the top-level SoC available to date but a horde of manufacturers are not ready to engage in the complexity of how the chipset is loaded on the phone. The processor no on-board modem for 5G but a standalone X55 radio chip, which Qualcomm has mandated should be bundled. For a manufacturer to use Snapdragon 865 on a phone, the X55 modem has to be used for 5G connectivity, which, in turn, becomes compulsory too. Technically, the OEMs pay for two chipsets when they use the Snapdragon 865. The entire setup also hogs more space on the PCB, making it difficult for OEMs to cram other equipment. The chipset is also power-hungry, forcing OEMs to integrate some intelligent battery-saving feature or a massively capacious battery on their phones.
The Snapdragon 765 or 765G, on the other hand, comes with an integrated X52 5G modem. The phone manufacturers not only find it easier to equip on the phone, but the chipset is also comparatively economical. The battery consumption by the Snapdragon 765G is also less as opposed to Snapdragon 865's. Although the performance of the Snapdragon 765G is below par when compared with the Snapdragon 865, it is by only so much.