The Snapdragon 820 isn't quite ready to make its debut appearance in a mobile device, but that hasn't stopped Qualcomm from continually teasing various aspects of the SoC's hardware for the past couple of months.
Today Qualcomm has announced the X12 LTE Modem, which will be integrated into the Snapdragon 820 to provide LTE and Wi-Fi support. This new modem promises improved LTE performance over its predecessor, boasting Category 12 LTE Advanced for speeds up to 600 Mbps down through 3x20 MHz carrier aggregation, 256-QAM, and 4x4 MIMO.
Upload speeds have also been improved, with the X12 supporting up to 150 Mbps up through 2x20 MHz CA and 64-QAM. In comparison, Qualcomm's current flagship Snapdragon 810 with its X10 modem only supports Category 9 LTE with speeds up to 450 Mbps down and 50 Mbps up.
The X12 supports tri-band Wi-Fi on 2.4, 5.0 and 60 GHz, supporting 802.11ac, 802.11ad, and 2x2 MU-MIMO for the best wireless performance possible. 802.11ad support in particular will allow multi-gigabit speeds over short ranges, potentially up to eight times faster than 802.11ac with the right network gear.
The Snapdragon 820 will also bring improved charging thanks to Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0. This new specification allows devices with Quick Charge 3.0 to charge 27 percent faster than under Quick Charge 2.0, while also losing 45 percent less power in the process.
The first devices to use the Snapdragon 820, the integrated X12 modem, and Quick Charge 3.0 should appear sometime in early 2016.