The Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset is official, and if you’re looking to upgrade your top-tier Android phone next year, chances are you’ll find this chipset powering your new flagship device.

We’ve learned what the new chip is capable of, and you’ll find everything you need to know about the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 in our coverage elsewhere.

Flights and accommodation for this launch event were funded by Qualcomm, but the opinions reflect the writer’s own independent opinion.

Do you just want to know the main changes? We’ve put together this list of what might change on your next Android phone. There are six main features you need to know, and these will give you an idea of ​​what to expect in upcoming flagships like the Samsung Galaxy S22, OnePlus 10, Xiaomi 12 and more.

1. An always-on camera can bring great new features

Let’s start with arguably the biggest change. The new chipset will allow your smartphone’s camera to always be on. Don’t worry, it won’t constantly take selfies – it’s designed to enable other features rather than taking photos.

Why would this be beneficial to you? It will allow developers to include features specifically designed to use your phone’s camera without you touching the device.

An example given by Qualcomm is that it will allow you to unlock your phone without touching it. Think about how you cook with ingredients on your hands, and it will allow you to unlock your phone without getting dirty on it.

Some have raised security concerns regarding the functionality, and you may be concerned about that as well. Qualcomm insists it is doing this in a secure manner to ensure that no one can take your data from your phone’s cameras, but it will be interesting to see how people could take advantage of this feature.

2. There are many camera upgrades available

The Samsung Galaxy S21 face down on a table.

The Samsung Galaxy S21 (Image credit: Avenir)

In addition to the always-on camera, you’ll find there are plenty of other upgrades coming to your smartphone’s camera. An 18-bit Image Signal Processor (ISP), improved night mode photography, better wide-angle shots, more powerful facial recognition technology, 8K HDR video recording… the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 focuses on upgrading his camera.

While the permanent upgrade is the feature that makes the headlines here, there are plenty of other small improvements that you can see on your next phone’s snapper that will improve the overall experience.

However, there aren’t many game-changing features here. Camera phones are fantastic already, but these smaller upgrades are likely to change the shooter performance you get from your smartphone slightly rather than revamping the whole experience.

3. Calls will cut off background noise

Qualcomm’s Voice Suite technology was upgraded in 2021, and the goal here is to remove background noise when you’re recording. For example, if you are on a video call, this new technology will use artificial intelligence to try to suppress noises such as sirens or keystrokes.

We saw a demonstration of the technology, and in Qualcomm’s examples, it worked incredibly well. It was on a benchmark device in a demo put together by Qualcomm, so we’re more interested in seeing this on a real device to see how it works in practice.

If it works as well as the suggested demos, it could change the way you are recorded on calls and the way you are heard by coworkers, friends and family.

4. You can achieve a 10 Gbit / s internet connection

It won’t be useful for everyone, but if you have a phenomenal quality 5G connection, you will find that you can hit faster speeds than ever before.

Last year’s Snapdragon 888 was limited to 7.5 Gbps, which is also blazingly fast. It’s nearly impossible to hit these speeds on an average day, but it helps to know that your 2022 flagship phone will be able to do so in the future.

5. Bokeh video is coming to Android

Cut in cinematic mode on the iPhone 13

Apple’s cutscene edit on the iPhone 13 (Image credit: Apple)

Bokeh is where you can blur the background of a subject, and it’s common in portrait modes across the Android sphere. If you wanted to achieve this effect in video recording, you haven’t been able to do it until now.

Similar technology debuted on the iPhone 13 series with Apple’s Cinematic Mode feature, and it’s now coming to Android phones via this new chipset.

We don’t know yet which manufacturers will include this feature, but it’s likely that many upcoming Android phones will install it in camera apps that you can play with. It is also capable of recording up to 4K.

6. Of course, it’s faster than ever

As you might expect, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is the company’s fastest chipset, which means your smartphone is faster at loading apps, playing games, and whatever else you throw at it.

According to Qualcomm, the processor here is 20% faster than the Snapdragon 888 and it also offers 30% energy savings compared to the results of this chip. The Adreno GPU is 30% faster, which should mean games load faster and look better than ever.

We won’t know how well the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 really works until we see it in newer smartphones (and whatever hardware makers decide to pair it with), but it looks like an update. important level for the biggest phones of 2022.