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Snapdragon 1.5GHz chip at heart of next year's smart phones

Next year will likely see the release of a more powerful series of smart phones running with 1.5GHz processors thanks to a new Snapdragon chip promised by Qualcomm

Next year will likely see the release of a more powerful series of smart phones thanks to a new Snapdragon chip from Qualcomm.

The Californian company, which already provides 1GHz processors for devices such as the Nexus One, HTC Desire, Dell Streak and Xperia X10, is now preparing to ship dual-core chips running at speeds of up to 1.5GHz, IDG News Service reports.

The 1GHz Snapdragon chip is now considered the standard speed at the snooty end of the market. But next year 1.5GHz could be the new benchmark that the must-have high-end smart phones require.

Qualcomm's vice president of product management, Mark Frankel, said these chips could also power a new range of tablets and cheap laptops.

Funnily enough, Qualcomm has only just started shipping chips that can run at speeds of 1.2GHz, and we haven't even seen these in any mobile phones yet. But Frankel said if companies were really on the ball they could have devices running with the 1.5GHz chips by Christmas.

As well as the power boost, this new generation of chips has features which should manage power better, helping battery life. It also has 1080p video playback ability, which is a boost to current Snapdragon 1GHz chips, which can only run 720p video.

Snapdragon chips were designed specifically to consume less power, so they could run on devices that often needed to be away from a power source, such as smart phones and tablets.

Mobile phone technology is constantly accelerating. Upcoming software such as Android 3.0 may need smart phones to cope with multitasking more memory-hungry applications than ever before.

And of course there will be another set of Apple iPhones and iPads next year, which will have their own ARM processor, most probably running at faster speeds than the 1GHz at present.

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