The Pixel 4 needs the new Snapdragon 855 Plus to succeed


Over the past few months, we’ve got a good idea of what the upcoming Pixel 4 will offer. The rumors and leaks have been abundant, so much so that Google even joined in on the fun by releasing an official press image of the device which shows off the backside of the phone with its abnormally-large camera module.

While we do know a lot about the phone, there are still some details missing. The main selling point of Google’s Pixel smartphones has been its imaging capabilities. Despite being a late entrant into the smartphone race, Google has proven time and time again that computational photography is the key to a great camera system. Unfortunately, Google’s devices have been severely underpowered when compared to the competition, leading to the Pixel 3 not selling as well as its predecessor.

The Pixel 4 looks stunning in white!

The Pixel 4 has a lot of ground to make up if Google wants to outclass the competition, and Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 855 Plus may be the key feature to set the coming Pixel apart from the competition. Announced earlier this week, the Snapdragon 855 Plus is an overclocked variant of the 855 which has been used in the majority of flagship smartphones this year. The primary CPU on the Snapdragon 855 Plus has been boosted from 2.84GHz to 2.96GHz, but the overclocking of the Adreno 640 GPU allows the new chip to deliver a 15% bump in performance. While these numbers show that the gaming experience offered by the 855 Plus will be a step up compared to the standard 855, users should be able to notice a slight performance increase in day-to-day tasks as well. 

Currently, we don’t have any concrete evidence showing that the Pixel 4 will use the new Snapdragon 855 Plus. Since the beginning, it’s been assumed that e phone would be powered by the same SD855 that we’ve seen in nearly every other 2019 flagship smartphone. But with the launch of the Pixel 4 expected sometime in October, it’s the perfect candidate to use Qualcomm’s new chip – a move which would give the Pixel 4 an extra selling point besides its camera experience.

Google Pixel 4 could come with a 16MP telephoto lens

With the launch of Stadia schedule in the coming months, the having the latest SD855 Plus inside the Pixel 4 would be an added selling point for Stadia as well since the streaming gaming service will be exclusive to Google Pixel smartphones (at least at launch). The extra power offered by the new chip wouldn’t necessarily be needed to run Stadia, but having the most powerful chip available would help convince people to buy the Pixel 4 over competing devices if they were already thinking of buying into Google’s Stadia vision. Naturally, having at least 6GB of even 8GB of RAM would help on that front as well.

Equipping the Pixel 4 with a Snapdragon 855 Plus is a requirement for the success of the phone, allowing it to stand out from every other flagship device currently vying for our attention.

Nick Gray
I'm a life-long tech enthusiast who has a soft spot for HTC. After writing about tech for more than a decade, I jumped at the opportunity to take on the role of Editor in Chief at Phandroid. Please contact me at [email protected].

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