Xiaomi 12 will be the first phone to get the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip — followed Oppo and Motorola

Xiaomi 12 concept design by LetsGoDigital
(Image credit: LetsGoDigital)

Update: A new batch of claimed leaked renders show off how the standard Xiaomi 12 will look more understated than its Ultra sibling.

Qualcomm has take the covers off the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip. Formally, predicted to be called the Snapdragon 898, the chip maker has gone for a new naming convention. But ultimately this is an evolution of the previous Snapdragon flagship 8-series chipsets, only this time sporting a new 4-nanometer process and a suite of improvements. 

These have been touted to be focussed on camera improvements, gaming, 5G and AI benefits. However, we won't know just how good this chip is until we get it in a real production phone. And the companies who will make the first round of these have now come forwards to ail the colors to Qualcomm's mast. 

The first company already with its name down for Snapdragon Gen 1 chips is Xiaomi, which has confirmed during Qualcomm's launch event that its next flagship, named Xiaomi 12, will arrive with the chip soon. 

The last equivalent phone, the Xiaomi Mi 11, first appeared in December of 2019, meaning we could see the Xiaomi 12 at debut in Xiaomi's native China before the end of this year, then get a wider release in early 2022. 

After Xiaomi, there's Oppo, which confirmed that a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip-equipped phone will arrive in the first quarter of 2022. If this phone is the follow-up to the Oppo Find X3 Pro, then it could launch in March, a year after its predecessor.

Leaks for the tentatively-named Find X4 aren't comprehensive yet, but the details we have are quite enticing. The phone will supposedly use a high-resolution QHD display and 12GB RAM, and most excitingly, 80W charging. That would be faster than almost any other phone we've tested here at TG, plus since Oppo is now intertwined with OnePlus, it could mean we see 80W charging on the OnePlus 10 later in 2022 too.

Finally, we've got Motorola. It announced its also launching its first Gen 1 phone in China, with the title of Edge X30, on December 9. The leaks we've heard for the phone make it sound far more luxurious than the average Moto handset, featuring a 6.67-inch 144Hz display, 50MP main and ultrawide cameras, a 60MP selfie camera, 5,000 mAh of battery capacity and 68W charging.

While these are only the first phones with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, we'll no doubt see it in more phones in due course. 

Snapdragon's flagship ships are widely used by Android phone makers, with the most obvious being Samsung's U.S. flagship phones, the next being the Galaxy S22 that's expected to arrive in February. However, companies like OnePlus, ZTE, Realme and Vivo have all used this line of chips too, and will likely do so again on their premium phones of 2022.

The only Android phone-making company we expect to not to use the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is Google. With the launch of the Google Pixel 6, it's moved away from buying in Qualcomm-made chips and started designing its own, named Tensor. Samsung's phones outside the U.S. are also unlikely to use Snapdragon-branded silicon, as Samsung prefers to use its own line of Exynos chips, such as the upcoming Exynos 2200, when it can.

Richard Priday
Assistant Phones Editor

Richard is based in London, covering news, reviews and how-tos for phones, tablets, gaming, and whatever else people need advice on. Following on from his MA in Magazine Journalism at the University of Sheffield, he's also written for WIRED U.K., The Register and Creative Bloq. When not at work, he's likely thinking about how to brew the perfect cup of specialty coffee.