Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 could launch in October to fight iPhone 15

A render of the Galaxy S24 Ultra from the back and front, in white
(Image credit: Technizo Concept)

Qualcomm’s annual flagship smartphone chip upgrade looks set to come a little earlier than usual, and that means that the next generation of Android phones could reach consumer pockets sooner than expected too.

As predicted by the leaker Digital Chat Station back in February, it appears that Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 will indeed arrive earlier than past chipsets. Qualcomm has put a ‘save the date’ note on its site stating that the next Snapdragon Summit will take place from October 24 to 26. As per usual, it’ll be in Hawaii.

The site doesn’t give much away, just saying that the event will allow people to “catch the next wave of mind-blowing innovation.” 

But with the past three generations of flagship Snapdragon arriving in November and December, this is markedly earlier than usual. And that could see high-end Android phones like the Samsung Galaxy S24 and OnePlus 12 getting out the gates a little faster, giving the iPhone 15 and its September launch a little less space than with previous generations.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3: What are we expecting?

Digital Chat Station, the leaker who correctly predicted Qualcomm’s early event back in February, popped up again in April with a prediction about performance. The chip, according to the leaker on the Chinese social network Weibo, will boast a significant 50% improvement to GPU performance. 

Given the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 already enjoys better graphical stats than Apple’s A16 chip, this could extend the gap even further (though the iPhone 15 Pro’s A17 chip is expected to be a big leap forward too, of course.)

Last month, the reliable leaker Ice Universe added his two cents to the mix. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 will come with a “1+5+2” configuration (one prime core with the highest clock speed, five performance cores for day-to-day stuff and two efficiency cores for less demanding work), he claims. He too predicts that the Adreno 750 GPU’s performance has been “greatly improved.”

Pleasingly, this improved performance apparently won’t have a knock-on effect to battery life. “This generation will maintain the overall energy efficiency of 8Gen2 and will be a Excellent [sic.] SoC,” he concluded. 

In other words, this is likely to be the chip to power plenty of the best phones of 2024, so we can’t wait to see what it can do. It looks like we only have five months before we’ll have a good idea of its capabilities, and how the next generation of Android devices will compare to the (then) one-month-old iPhone 15 family.

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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.