Snapdragon 855 – The Specs and Why People Want A Piece Of It




Snapdragon is a popular series of processors or CPU for smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices. It is made by American multinational semiconductor and telecommunications equipment company, Qualcomm.

The first Snapdragon processor was launched in November 2007, operating at a speed of 1GHz. Forwarding to now whereby the Snapdragon 855 received the EAL-4+ certification which makes it the first SoC (system-on-a-chip) to be recognized as a smart card security system.

This certification allows manufacturers to use Snapdragon 855 as the only secure storage area for apps such as payment IDs, encryption keys and eSIM management, all without using a separate security chip. Phones that use Snapdragon include brands such as Google, Sony, Samsung, HTC and other popular Android smartphones and tablets.



There are several series of Snapdragon (SD) processors namely 200, 400, 600 and 800. The latest mobile processor enables you to support premium mobile experiences built on 5G. This means on-device artificial intelligence (AI) and extended reality (XR). According to Gizmodo, Qualcomm claims the latest SD 855 has a general improvement of 45 percent in comparison to the SD 845.  

Qualcomm also prides itself in “industry-leading efficiency” which refers to its per watt performance. Devices with SD 855 uses 30 percent less power when a 4K/60ofps video is played which is a huge step in the overall upgrade.

Alongside the SD 855 is the SD 855 Plus which gears towards gaming, AI, and XR. This is a class above the original chip, said in a Qualcomm press release. The fundamental differences between the 855 and 855 Plus are higher 2,96GHz clock speed in the Qualcomm Kryo 485 Octa-core CPU powering both (up to 2.84 GHz). The Adreno 640 GPU found in the SD 855 Plus has an alleged 15% increase over the standard 855 in performance.



The default SD 855 comes with Qualcomm’s Cat 20 X24 LTE modem that supports wireless speeds up to 2 Gbps and includes features such as 4×4 MIMO and carrier aggregation, however it is limited to 4G LTE service only.

Device makers that want to include 5G support, adding Qualcomm’s X50 5G cellular modem would be a solution. It supports speeds up to 6 Gbps! (Fun fact: The current average mobile data speeds in the U.S. currently sit between 27 Mbps down and 8.7 MBps up.)

The SD 855 also supports Bluetooth 5.0 connections up to 2 Mbps and Wi-Fi 6. It’s quite certain that based on Qualcomm’s reputation in terms of networking, connectivity will be one of its strongest portfolios.



Many people tend to use their phones as their primary cameras. On the SD 855, there is a Spectra 380 ISP and what Qualcomm is calling a computer vision function which allows better depth information, object-recognition and sorting capabilities to organize pictures. It even offers a built-in green screen feature that enables cut and paste functions for objects and backgrounds into pictures in real-time. 

As for videos, the Snapdragon 855 supports 4K HDR video capture while using portrait mode, this means clearer and crisper footages. There is also a new file format named High-Efficiency Image File (HEIF) which helps to enhance burst shooting, live photo-style GIFs all that reasonably small file sizes. Finally, HDR 10+ video for both recording and playback which promises a higher level of vibrancy and quality.



This one for your inner gamers. Qualcomm states that the SD 855 potentially supports VR headsets with 8K resolution at 120 fps coupled with a wired connection. It seeks to accelerate and use energy more efficiently whilst streaming. The addition of Qualcomm’s aptX adaptive audio codec also entices us with higher fidelity music.

The company made mention of the Snapdragon Elite Gaming experience which guarantees physically based rendering (PBR) that calculates textures based on scans of real objects. This and other features are designed to increase frame rates and lower latency.


This powerful piece of technology promises to enhance our mobile devices in countless ways and thankfully you can be a proud owner, it just may be time for an upgrade.

Snapdragon 855 devices

Samsung Galaxy S10
Samsung Galaxy S10e
Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus
Samsung Galaxy S10 5G
Samsung Galaxy Fold
Sony Xperia 1
Xiaomi Mi 9
Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 5G
LG G8 ThinQ
LG V50 ThinQ
Xiaomi Black Shark 2
Lenovo Z5 Pro GT
ZTE Axon 10 Pro 5G
Nubia Red Magic 3
Lenovo Z6 Pro
Meizhu 16s
Sharp Aquos R3
OnePlus 7
OnePlus 7 Pro
Asus ZenFone 6
OPPO Reno 10X Zoom
Redmi K20 Pro

Snapdragon 855 Plus devices

Asus ROG Phone 2
Xiaomi Black Shark 2 Pro


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