Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Qualcomm’s new smartphone chip is all about virtual reality

Qualcomm’s next flagship smartphone chip is all about enabling virtual reality.

According to the company, the Snapdragon 820 offers a trinity of features to enable the virtual-reality future, as revealed to TrustedReviews at the chipset’s New York launch event.

The US chipmaker says that the new model offers “crisp details, smooth visuals and accurate colours” to keep VR feeling immersive.

It also supports “3D surround sound and clarity” because, according to Qualcomm, the audio “has to be real”.

The challenge for VR audio is that it needs to be 3D positional,” a Qualcomm spokesperson explains. “But VR, you’re actually not just hearing something from your left or your right or your front or your back. Things approach you.”

And finally, Qualcomm talked up the speed of its next chip – courtesy of the new Kyro CPU and Adreno 530 GPU – which brings “responsive, seamless, intelligent, and personalised” processing, to keep your VR lag-free.

Related: Best Android Smartphones 2015

It’s a good move for Qualcomm, as the impending release of several major VR headsets – the Oculus Rift, PlayStation VR, and HTC Vive – means virtual reality is about to take off.

If Qualcomm can get a handle of mobile VR courtesy of the Snapdragon 820, it could open up a new revenue stream for the firm.

Check out our smartphone buyer’s video guide below:

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2004, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have 9 million users a month around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.