Say goodbye to Qualcomm Snapdragon — 'new era' of chips coming in 2021

Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor front and back leaning on smartphone
(Image credit: Qualcomm)

Qualcomm confirms it will drop its own name on Snapdragon platforms to make way for a "new era" of standalone product branding. Say goodbye to triple-digit smartphone chips and hello to “fireball” logos.

The San Diego semiconductor giant announced a number of new changes coming in 2021, including separating its signature "Qualcomm" name on Snapdragon products, introducing new colors to represent the products category, and transitioning to single-digit branding on its popular mobile chips. Instead of Snapdragon 888, expect a new "flagship Snapdragon 8-series platform."

Other changes include Qualcomm's iconic "fireball" symbol being used to represent the brand more prominently, while new colors such as Midnight, Gunmetal, Nickel, Snapdragon Red, and Gold will be used to represent the "tier" of the product. For example, gold will be used on premium ships and products.

Interestingly, Qualcomm states 5G is synonymous with Snapdragon platforms, meaning the company won't need to put "5G" branding as "5G will be a given."

With Qualcomm and Snapdragon being separate brands, smartphone and laptop manufacturers that use Qualcomm chips, such as Samsung and other Android devices, will also being going through a few changes.

Nothing recently announced it is partnering with Qualcomm to use  Snapdragon chips to power upcoming devices, using its 5G mobile platforms across many different categories of devices. With tech giants such as Apple and Google making their own chips for devices such as the M1 MacBook or Tensor-powered Pixel 6, Nothing may take over to become the next king of Snapdragon-powered devices.

According to a report from Nikkei Asia, however, the days of Qualcomm Snapdragon chips may be numbered. Oppo is tipped to build its own custom smartphone chips, following Apple and Google, which means we may not see as many Snapdragon chips in well-known flagship devices. Still, there's no denying the power of Snapdragon SoCs, especially in our list of best smartphones

Darragh Murphy

Darragh Murphy is fascinated by all things bizarre, which usually leads to assorted coverage varying from washing machines designed for AirPods to the mischievous world of cyberattacks. Whether it's connecting Scar from The Lion King to two-factor authentication or turning his love for gadgets into a fabricated rap battle from 8 Mile, he believes there’s always a quirky spin to be made. With a Master’s degree in Magazine Journalism from The University of Sheffield, along with short stints at Kerrang! and Exposed Magazine, Darragh started his career writing about the tech industry at Time Out Dubai and ShortList Dubai, covering everything from the latest iPhone models and Huawei laptops to massive Esports events in the Middle East. Now, he can be found proudly diving into gaming, gadgets, and letting readers know the joys of docking stations for Laptop Mag.