Context. 2021 Snapdragon Summit taking place in Hawaii. Qualcomm unveiling its best weapons for the start of next season among which are, of course, the processor that aims to lead the Android market in the next 12 months. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, with new architecture, a lot of power and firsts in the caliber of its Snapdragon Sight for photography.
But in addition to this, Qualcomm has wanted to take a look at the portable console market and for this it has created a new chip. Its about Snapdragon G3x Gen 1, which gets the surname ‘Gaming Platform’ And it claims to be the first of many chips intended to squeeze gaming onto portable platforms. And to top it off, it comes with a test console, the Snapdragon G3x Handheld Developer kit, for developers.
A processor for portable Android consoles and an Android console to prove it
Qualcomm tells from the sunny climate of Hawaii that the video game market generates around 175,000 million dollars each year, and that more than half of that income is generated from the mobile market. Given that, and that the park gamers It is estimated at around 2,500 million users worldwide, it is understood that the North American manufacturer wants a part of the cake.
To do this, Qualcomm have created a new processor whose purpose is to move portable consoles with the same ease and power that more “traditional” devices (to call them somehow) such as personal computers or desktop consoles deploy. That is the reason for the new Snapdragon G3x Gen 1, a chip for Android handheld consoles who, for a long time, have done practically everything.
Qualcomm account that PC games can now be played from an Android gaming platform Through streaming (speaking of Stadia or xCloud, for example), you can also play games directly in the cloud and, of course, there are games present whose graphic power is very close to that of consoles. That makes it necessary to have a really powerful chip and, as far as possible, dedicated. So the G3x Gen 1 of the Americans tries to fill that gap. Why mount a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 on a portable console if you already have the specialized G3x Gen 1. It is roughly the idea.
A Snapdragon with all Qualcomm technology designed to squeeze power for games and connectivity
So Qualcomm gets down to business and builds a chip that not only deploys high-level power but also focuses on connectivity and energy savings and emphasizes its compatibility with all types of controllers and input methods. An ideal chip to be the heart and brain of a ‘Nintendo Switch with Android’ that can be built by any of the major players in the mobile market at the moment. Or even by the players in the game console market. Let’s remember that Sony is loving the mobile again, and this G3x Gen 1 would be the ideal excuse to do more than just game ports.
And to present its new processor, instead of waiting for some manufacturer to decide to use the Snapdragon G3x Gen 1 in one of its products, Qualcomm itself has created one as part of its developer kit. That is el Snapdragon G3x Handheld Developer kit. A portable console manufactured by Qualcomm to be able to work on creating new games for it, or to try to adapt existing games. So we have a whole gaming chip with the potential of Qualcomm developments and offering support for Qualcomm XR accessories (their virtual reality platform), support for 4K output to TV, and both 5G and WiFi 6E. A portable console at full power and with all the laws.
The console is for developers … at least in the first instance
We do not yet know if this console can be purchased by the general public since Qualcomm only says that “we have to serve the developer community first.” Perhaps this Snapdragon G3x Handheld Developer Kit ends up losing its last name “Developer Kit” to become a product for sale, we’ll see what happens to it. But what seems clear is that Qualcomm wants its piece of the video game market, and it is going to manufacture specialized brains to achieve it. And maybe consoles too.