Samsung’s bespoke Snapdragon chipset may be coming to other phones soon

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra review apps
The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra uses a bespoke version of Qualcomm's latest chipset (Image credit: Future | Alex Walker-Todd)

Samsung made a big song and dance about the bespoke Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipsets powering its Galaxy S23 phones, but new rumors suggest a similarly overclocked version of Qualcomm’s latest processor could be coming to other premium handsets very soon. 

That prediction comes from Weibo leaker Digital Chat Station (via Android Authority), who claims that Samsung’s “high-frequency version” of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 will be made available to “domestic” (i.e. Chinese) smartphone brands imminently. 

The leaker makes no mention of specific brands, but the likes of ASUS, OnePlus, Redmagic and Xiaomi could all utilize this upgraded processor in whatever as-yet-unreleased premium handsets they have in the pipeline for 2023 and beyond. 

If you’re into your number-crunching, Qualcomm’s ‘Made for Samsung’ Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset delivers slightly higher peak CPU and GPU clock speeds than its standard counterpart (3.36GHz versus 3.2GHz, and 719MHz versus 680MHz). 

A model of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 in a perspex disc in-hand at the Snapdragon Summit 2022 in Hawaii

Qualcomm announced its powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor last year (Image credit: Future / Alex Walker-Todd)

The real-world performance differences between the two processors, however, are negligible. In our Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra review, we said “the S23 Ultra gains a slight edge over the OnePlus 11 ... but the Ultra's lead is so slight that you're unlikely to feel any real-world benefit." That "For Galaxy" Snapdragon seems “far more beneficial for Samsung Galaxy S23 series marketing campaign” than it is for the user.

In other words, while Qualcomm’s bespoke chipset does technically offer superior performance, it’s nigh-on impossible to perceive any tangible speed differences between the Samsung Galaxy S23 series and other Snapdragon 8 Gen 2-equipped phones like the OnePlus 11 and Honor Magic 5 Pro.

The upshot is that anyone hell-bent on owning the fastest and most powerful Snapdragon chipset around may have more options to choose from in a few months’ time. 

As for the chipset that could replace the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, we’re expecting Qualcomm to unveil the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 at its annual Snapdragon Summit, which takes place in November.

Axel Metz
Phones Editor

Axel is TechRadar's UK-based Phones Editor, reporting on everything from the latest Apple developments to newest AI breakthroughs as part of the site's Mobile Computing vertical. Having previously written for publications including Esquire and FourFourTwo, Axel is well-versed in the applications of technology beyond the desktop, and his coverage extends from general reporting and analysis to in-depth interviews and opinion.  Axel studied for a degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick before joining TechRadar in 2020, where he then earned an NCTJ qualification as part of the company’s inaugural digital training scheme.