What just happened? Qualcomm has announced its new line of G-series gaming chips that are expected to power Android-based handheld devices in the near future. Currently, Qualcomm's gaming portfolio includes the G3X Gen 1 processor that powers the Android-based Razer Edge gaming handheld, but the new lineup comes with multiple chips with various levels of features and performance for different segments of the market.
The new Snapdragon G-series includes three chips: the G3x Gen 2, G2 Gen 1, and G1 Gen 1. Starting with the most powerful of the trio, the G3x Gen 2 is the successor to the aforementioned G3X Gen 1, and the new flagship in Qualcomm's lineup. This is the chip that Qualcomm believes could power the most premium gaming handhelds in the market and offer "best-in-class gaming experiences across a broad spectrum of gaming ecosystems."
The G3X Gen 2 is reported to be much faster than its predecessor, which is good news for potential buyers. The chip has an octa-core Kryo CPU that Qualcomm claims is over 30 percent faster than the G3X Gen 1, while its Adreno A32 GPU is said to be 2 times faster than its immediate predecessor. The chip also comes with a ton of gaming-related features, including hardware-accelerated ray tracing, game super resolution, XR glass tethering, and more.
In terms of connectivity, the new chip offers low-latency premium Bluetooth audio with Snapdragon Sound Technology Suite, alongside Wi-Fi 7, 5G sub-6, and 5G mmWave support. The Snapdragon G3x Gen 2 Handheld Gaming Reference Design is already being sampled by some manufactures, but Qualcomm did not identify the companies that have been granted early access to the chip. There's no word either on when devices powered by the new chip will be available for purchase, but the company said that product announcements would follow sooner rather than later.
Next up is the Snapdragon G2 Gen 1, which also comes with an octa-core Kryo CPU and a "gaming-optimized" Adreno A21 GPU. For connectivity, it includes the Snapdragon X62 5G Modem-RF System and Wi-Fi 6/6E from the Qualcomm FastConnect 6700 Mobile Connectivity System.
Finally, there's the entry-level Snapdragon G1 Gen 1, which has an octa-core Kryo CPU paired with the Adreno A11 GPU. There's no mention of 5G, but Qualcomm promises it will offer "lag-free connectivity and (long-lasting) battery life," which should help gamers stream their favorite games for longer periods without having to reach for the charger.