Qualcomm’s mobile processor names have gotten a bit messy in recent years. Sure, Snapdragon 800 series chips are for flagships and Snapdragon 200 and 400 series chips are aimed at budget devices. But you’d need a reference manual to know that a Snapdragon 480+ 5G is newer than a Snapdragon 888 and to figure out how the two actually compare.

So Qualcomm has announced plans to simplify its mobile chip names moving forward.

The chip maker is going to stop putting the Qualcomm name on its chips. You’ll just see the Snapdragon branding from now on.

There will also be no more 3-digit numbers. Instead, you’ll get a single digit letting you know what category the chip is, followed by a generation number.

Qualcomm also plans to use colored badges for its chip logos, helping you see at a glance where they fit in the lineup:

  • Gold for top-tier chips
  • Midnight, Gunmetal, Nickel, and Red for other chips (more details on which category gets which color will likely be forthcoming soon)

And since all of Qualcomm’s mobile chips have 5G support these days, the company is going to stop adding 5G to the end of the names.

So goodbye Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 5G Mobile Platform, and hello Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 (a name which first leaked a little earlier this month).

Not only will the new naming conventions hopefully make it a little easier to tell chips apart without a cheat sheet, but it will also probably help Qualcomm from running out of 3-digit numbers.

More details about Qualcomm’s upcoming chip lineup will likely be revealed at the Snapdragon Tech Summit, which is scheduled for November 30 – December 1, 2021.

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3 replies on “Qualcomm Snapdragon chips will have simplified, single-digit names moving forward”

  1. I was expecting they had to rebrand the Snapdragon lines sooner or later. I was guessing maybe a carryover to four-digit numbers, like 4000 and 8000 series. They made it worse for themselves by advancing through available numbers faster than they needed too and having multiple current chips within the same number series. I know they simultaneously had 28nm and lower process chips, A53 quad and octa-core chips, and A53 and A7x-based chips in the 400 series in recent years. We’ll have to see how the new naming is rolled out. I suspect the metal description will be used to differentiate the issues I just mentioned of having higher and lower-end chips within the same line. If the result is truly simplified and not messy, then that would be good.

  2. Oh, wonderful. That won’t get confusing at all. I’m looking forward to the Snapdragon 5 Gen 3 gunmetal, which of course is a lot better than the Snapdragon 6 gen 2 red. This is no different from what they did already:
    First digit is the range, which they’re keeping.
    Second digit is the generation number, which they’re also keeping.
    Third digit is basically random, but it does correlate with performance when there are multiple options. They’ve replaced it with random words, but now there will be five options instead of the normal one or two.

    1. I don’t think that the color is part of the product name. It’s just on the “box” to indicate whether you’re looking at a premium, mid-range, or budget device.

      As far as “Snapdragon 5 Gen 3” being better than “Snapdragon 6 gen 2”, no naming scheme can fix that. As technology develops you’ll always end up having newer budget options that outperform older premium options. The only way out of that situation is to have one product line that gets successively better. No premium/mid-range/budget; everything is just one product line.

      P.S. I suppose that you could have the product name be some performance benchmark. Then it would be clear which processor is better at that specific benchmark.

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