updated 04:50 am EST, Mon February 27, 2012
Qualcomm adds more graphics grunt to S4
Qualcomm delivered a message to smartphone SoC rivals by announcing a new chipset in its arsenal, the Snapdragon S4 'Pro.' The Snapdragon S4 (MSM8960) has already posted impressive benchmark results, however, they have been biased towards pure processing performance. The new 'Pro' iteration will also ramp performance up on the graphics front with the addition of the new Adreno 320 GPU in place of the standard Adreno 225 GPU.
The Adreno 320 GPU will offer a 4x improvement in graphics performance over the Adreno 225 GPU, which will improve performance in web page rendering, UIs and games in particular. Qualcomm says that they new GPU will offer more realistic 3D graphics by including support for instancing, occlusion queries and multiple render targets.
Qualcomm expects the Snapdragon S4 'Pro' chip to be deployed particularly in high-resolution tablets, which need the additional graphics horsepower to drive the additional pixels. Devices shipping with the new SoC will start to appear in the second-half of 2012.