Forget Google Pixel 7 — the Pixel 8’s Tensor 3 chip is reportedly in development

Google Pixel 7 reveal at Google IO 2022
(Image credit: Google)

We’re still yet to find out how the Tensor 2-powered Pixel 7 shapes up against the best phones of the year, but Google is apparently already testing 2023’s chips. 

According to GalaxyClub, Google and its partners at Samsung have begun testing what will likely become known as the Tensor 3. The third-generation chipset has the model number S5P9865, and is being tested on a board codenamed Ripcurrent.

For comparison, the Tensor 2 has the model number S5P9855 and is being tested on a board codenamed Cloudripper, while the original Tensor that’s already out in the Pixel 6 has the model number S5P9845. The pattern isn’t hard to spot.

There’s nothing about how the reported Tensor 3 will improve upon its predecessors in the report (which is hardly surprising, given we don’t yet know how the Tensor 2 chip will fare), though no doubt it’ll offer the usual speed and efficiency improvements chips see between generations. 

What’s more interesting, perhaps, is that it shows Google has no regrets about its decision to go its own way with the Pixel 6. Stepping away from Qualcomm — the chipmaker that provides the vast majority of processors for the best Android phones — is a decision that could have ended badly. The fact that the company intends to repeat its choice not just for the Pixel 7, but presumably also the Pixel 8 suggests that the gamble has paid off for Google in terms of sales.

Hopefully we will see a big performance increase with the Pixel 7, all the same. While the Pixel 6 was a great start, the benchmarks show that it wasn’t quite as speedy as handsets powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888, let alone the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 or Apple’s A15 Bionic. 

We shouldn’t have to wait too much longer to find out. Google has already announced that the Pixel 7 will arrive this fall, and past form suggests that we can expect an event in October, when we should also get our hands on the company’s first wearable: the Pixel Watch.

There are also ongoing rumors that a foldable called the Pixel Notepad may be on the way, but that’s definitely more in the ‘maybe’ column for 2022.

Next: The Pixel 7 range could come with this major Bluetooth audio upgrade

Alan Martin

Freelance contributor Alan has been writing about tech for over a decade, covering phones, drones and everything in between. Previously Deputy Editor of tech site Alphr, his words are found all over the web and in the occasional magazine too. When not weighing up the pros and cons of the latest smartwatch, you'll probably find him tackling his ever-growing games backlog. Or, more likely, playing Spelunky for the millionth time.

  • divakarraj
    Then will be there an article when Pixel 8 is a about to be released as "Forget Google Pixel 8 -- the Pixel 9's Tensor 4 chip is reportedly in Development"?
  • d0x360
    divakarraj said:
    Then will be there an article when Pixel 8 is a about to be released as "Forget Google Pixel 8 -- the Pixel 9's Tensor 4 chip is reportedly in Development"?
    Yup, for 6 they said forget 6 pixel 7 could get this massive camera upgrade... Ok but it's almost time for 7. 8 is at least a year and 2 months away.