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These are the next-gen chips that will power 2016’s most powerful Android phones

Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 Vs. Samsung Exynos 8

With the launch of the Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X, all of 2015’s major flagship Android phones have now been released. This means it’s time to look forward to 2016 and the hardware that we can look forward to seeing on next year’s devices. Happily, we now have some new information on both the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 and the Samsung Exynos 8 Octa that will be the two most prominent chips in 2016’s most powerful Android phones.

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First, we see that the first benchmark of a phone with the Snapdragon 820 has shown up on Geekbench. As seen in the benchmark for the Xiaomi Gemini, the Snapdragon 820 earns a single-core score of 2,162 and a multi-core score of 5,116. While that single-core score is impressive it actually is still slightly behind Apple’s A9 chipset, which earned a single-core score of 2,542 on Geekbench. All the same, it looks like the Snapdragon 820 will be a powerful chip that hopefully won’t suffer from the thermal throttling issues that plagued the Snapdragon 810.

Our second piece of news comes directly from Samsung, which unveiled its next-generation Exynos 8 Octa 8890 processor on Wednesday that will presumably be used in some versions of its upcoming Galaxy S7. The company says that the Exynos 8 Octa is its first chipset that will include its “initial premium custom CPU cores based on 64-bit ARMv8 architecture providing over 30 percent improvement in performance and 10 percent in power efficiency compared to the Exynos 7 Octa.” The Exynos 8 Octa will also be the first high-end Samsung chip to combine the processor with the modem.

Samsung will start mass producing the chip in late 2015, which means it will likely be ready to go into the Galaxy S7. Samsung used only its Exynos chips for last year’s Galaxy S6, which proved to be a wise decision given the troubles many OEMs had with the Snapdragon 810. The latest rumors say that Samsung will use both the Exynos 8 and the Snapdragon 820 in its flagship devices this year, depending on the market where they’re released.

Prior to joining BGR as News Editor, Brad Reed spent five years covering the wireless industry for Network World. His first smartphone was a BlackBerry but he has since become a loyal Android user.