Qualcomm simply launched a brand new chipset that’s designed to take a seat slightly below its present flagship by way of capabilities and worth. The Snapdragon 8S Gen 3 goals to deliver a lot of the 8 Gen 3’s options — together with help for on-device generative AI fashions — to more affordable phones. It represents a brand new tier for the top-of-the-line 8-series chips, and it’s additionally a little bit bit complicated.

Earlier than we get into all that, let’s begin with the simple stuff: the 8S Gen 3 features a GPU much like the usual 8 Gen 3, although it has one much less efficiency core and runs at a decrease frequency — the prime core runs at as much as 3.0GHz versus 3.4GHz on the 8 Gen 3. The brand new 8S Gen 3 additionally makes use of a previous-gen modem, the X70 5G, which incorporates Wi-Fi 7 help. There’s additionally help for hardware-accelerated ray tracing so photorealistic video games run more easily, which appears to be form of a benchmark of cellphone flagship-iness lately.

Naturally, there’s AI. The 8S Gen 3 helps multimodal generative AI on-device and might run massive language fashions of as much as 10 billion parameters — that features the likes of Llama 2 and Gemini Nano. It doesn’t supply all the AI capabilities of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3, but it surely does help gen AI digital assistants and picture growth.

The way in which Qualcomm’s Deepu John, senior director of product administration, explains it, every Snapdragon high-level tier will be damaged down into three sub-categories. There are Snapdragon 8, 7, 6, and 4 sequence chipsets, and inside these, as much as three totally different choices. This “S” sequence chip sits slightly below the usual 8 Gen 3, and if Qualcomm ever releases an 8 Plus Gen 3, it will sit on high.

Acquired it? Nice, it will get even more complicated once you keep in mind that cellphone producers are nonetheless utilizing 2022’s flagship, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 in not-quite flagship phones just like the OnePlus 12R. There’s additionally the Snapdragon 7 Gen 3 sitting slightly below the 8S Gen 3, although it has solely turned up in (*3*). Qualcomm appears to be slicing the high-end cellphone market awfully skinny, possibly in an try and preserve OEMs from turning to MediaTek for his or her less-than-flagship units.

In any case, the 8S Gen 3 ought to begin showing in the marketplace quickly sufficient, although not in units readily offered within the US. Honor, iQOO, Realme, Redmi, and Xiaomi have all mentioned that they’ll be utilizing the platform, with new units anticipated “in the coming months.”