Qualcomm said to be working on a new smartwatch chip with more power

Qualcomm said to be working on a new smartwatch chip with more power
According to WinFuture (via Android Police), Qualcomm is prepping a new chipset for smartwatches. The chipmaker's current Wear 3100 hasn't exactly been knocking down the doors of watch manufacturers and is about to be replaced by a new chip known as either the "Snapdragon Wear 429" or "Snapdragon Wear 2700." The new chip be will be produced using the 12nm process and will feature Cortex-A53 CPU cores along with 64-bit support. Compare those specs with the Wear 3100, which is made using the much larger 28nm process and comes with four Cortex-A7 cores. The 3100 offers 32-bit support. The smaller node size should allow Qualcomm to stuff more transistors into the Wear 429/Wear 2700. That will make it more powerful and less starved for energy than its predecessor.

The Wear 3100 was marketed as a low power chip that features a co-processor to handle simple tasks that don't require the full computing power of its Cortex-A7 cores. This saves battery life and keeps the lights on when the user is not busy interacting with the watch. Battery life on a timepiece running the Wear 3100 is said to be between 36 and 60 hours. However, most recent Wear OS watches continue to use the older Wear 2100 chipset, which was introduced back in 2016. The Wear 3100 was unveiled in 2018.

The report says Qualcomm is testing the Wear 429/Wear2700 chip with a platform that includes 1GB of LPDDR3 RAM and 8GB of eMMC storage. The chip is said to include a power-saving feature that sends some tasks to lower power chips or cores in order to save battery life. The Wear 429 name suggests that the new chip is based on the Snapdragon 429 Mobile Platform which also uses a 12nm mode and features the Cortex-A53 cores. The Nokia 3.2 and a few other handsets have the Snapdragon 429 SoC under the hood. Based on the similarity between the two chipsets, the Wear 429 could run at a maximum clock speed of 2GHz compared with 1.2GHz for the Wear 3100.

Earlier today, the chip maker announced a new Snapdragon 215 Mobile Platform aimed at lower-end handsets.

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7 Comments

1. Plutonium239

Posts: 1232; Member since: Mar 17, 2015

Why don't they make them with the 8nm process?

4. LiveFaith

Posts: 487; Member since: Jul 04, 2015

Thought the same. I'm guessing it's cost.

2. sgodsell

Posts: 7443; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

The 64 bit is nice to have, especially when Google has decided that they will load a lot of the voice processing on local devices. That was announced back at Google IO.

3. lyndon420

Posts: 6824; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

Get some new long lasting solid state battery tech in these things and then I'll try to justify purchasing a wrist worn timepiece again.

5. LiveFaith

Posts: 487; Member since: Jul 04, 2015

Boy, Android Wear watches are laggy as crap. I own the newest Fossil Q4 and had to go searching a web to find ways to make the thing usable, bc it was so laggy. Hard reset, disabled Google voice recognition and went into developer mode to nearly eliminate visual transitions ... shazaam ... it work pretty smooth. Still won't get a full day on a charge with dim screen. This all makes me wonder what non-techie buyers do when they buy these things. Long story(sorry) short, YES bring better power mgmt and speed. A/W watches need both.

6. Plutonium239

Posts: 1232; Member since: Mar 17, 2015

I don't have any issues with my gear s2, but I think that is running on tizen not android wear.

7. oldskool50 unregistered

Same here. I have the S2 and S3 Frontier. I get about 1.5 days from both. Seems to drain faster when I workout as the HRM is going. But overall it's been awesome. I can;t stand Android Wear. Some of the watches look really nice though. But for me smartwatches are really boring and dumb and are just money grabs. The best thing for me is when I workout I can leave the phone at home and still get all my calls.

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