Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Qualcomm launches two new next-generation spatial computing platforms

Qualcomm has launched two new next-generation spatial computing platforms- Snapdragon XR Gen 2 and Snapdragon AR Gen 1- to enable the next generation of mixed reality (MR), virtual reality (VR) devices, and smart glasses. These next-generation platforms were developed in collaboration with Meta.

The Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2 Platform brings premium MR and VR technology into a single-chip architecture to unlock next-level immersive experiences in thinner, more comfortable headsets that don’t require an external battery pack.

Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2 is designed to deliver a lag-free experience with amazing visuals, inbuilt interactions, and fully immersive sound; the platform allows users to blend virtual content with their physical surroundings and transition seamlessly between MR and VR experiences. With support for up to 3k by 3k displays, this efficient marvel brings true-to-life scenes with more depth, shades, textures, and colors for ultimate immersive entertainment.

It is also highly power efficient, eliminating the need for an external battery pack. The Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2 has powerful on-device AI and low-latency video-see-through.

Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2 is integrated with the next-gen Qualcomm Adreno GPU power 2.5 times higher GPU performance that lets stunning scenes unfold at faster frequency rates, with less jitter and stunning details. Also, it supports dynamic foveated rendering, space warp, and game super-resolution, which will make your games and apps run smoothly.

Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2 also has eight times more performant AI compared to Snapdragon XR2 Gen 1, support for ten concurrent cameras, and dedicated XR acceleration blocks enable unprecedented interaction concurrency including hand, head, controller, facial expression, depth estimation, and 3D reconstruction for interactions that feel more natural than ever before.

This purpose-built platform packs premium MR and VR technology into a single chip architecture for thinner, more comfortable headsets. The upgraded ISP and full color, ultra-fast 12ms video see-through latency deliver smooth transitions between the real and the virtual world, enhanced visual fidelity, and unparalleled digital comfort.

Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2 offers Qualcomm FastConnect, with ultra-fast Wi-Fi 7 and Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3 and 5.2 wireless connectivity for 60% higher throughput than solutions without HBS Multi-Link and Software Suite and 80% lower latency.

Snapdragon XR Gen 2
Snapdragon XR Gen 2. Credit: Qualcomm.

The Snapdragon AR1 Gen 1 Platform is the first Snapdragon XR platform designed for smart glasses. This purpose-built platform features Dual ISPs for premium photo and video capture and support for binocular displays for hands-free notifications and directions. The Snapdragon AR1 Gen 1 is the perfect blend of smarts and style with powerful on-device AI, blazing-fast connectivity, and optimized thermals.

The Snapdragon AR1 Gen 1 platform offers premium dual ISPs that enable 12MP photo and 6MP video capture directly from glasses. It also supports single or double-lens display, 3DoF, and 1280 x 1280 resolution per eye at 60fps; notifications and alerts blend seamlessly into users’ field of view to enhance viewing comfort.

This platform is powered by a third-generation Qualcomm Hexagon NPU and an AR-grade engine for visual analytics that enhances image and audio quality to ensure lifelike memory capture. Visual search and real-time translation capabilities enable the ultimate personal assistant experience.

The Snapdragon AR1 Gen 1 platform can be seamlessly connected via FastConnect Wi-Fi 7, and support for Bluetooth 5.3 and 5.2 wireless technologies and increased memory enables seamless and fast live streaming through the glasses.

This platform has eight microphones and AI-driven targeted capture that enables crystal clear audio and video capture, and Qualcomm noise and echo cancellation allow for clear calls.

The Snapdragon AR1 Gen 1 platform is uniquely designed with power optimization for thermal budget, enabling sleek, lightweight smart glasses that deliver an unparalleled experience.

The platform allows users to capture, share, or live-stream hands-free directly from the glasses. Additionally, on-device AI enables personalized assistive experiences such as audio quality enhancement, visual search, and real-time translation. Finally, support for visual head-up displays can enable content consumption with video, which blends seamlessly into the users’ field of view.

Snapdragon AR Gen 1
Snapdragon AR Gen 1. Credit: Qualcomm.

The collaboration with Meta will feature the Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2 Platform in the Meta Quest 3 and Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses collection powered by the Snapdragon AR1 Platform. Meta will commercially launch on Meta devices in 2023.

Andrew “Boz” Bosworth, Meta’s CTO and Head of Reality Labs. “The latest Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2 and Snapdragon AR1 Platforms, which power Meta Quest 3 and our next-generation Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses, are another testament to the strength of this collaboration, and we are thrilled for users around the world to experience them.”

“Qualcomm Technologies has a relentless commitment to build technologies and solutions that will transform the future of computing. The Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2 and Snapdragon AR1 Platforms are the latest purpose-built processors that are designed to power the next generation of MR and VR devices and sleek, smart glasses for all,” said Hugo Swart, vice president and GM of XR, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “The commercial debut of these two platforms with Meta is a further step forward in realizing our joint vision – unlocking premium, all-in-one XR devices and smart glasses that are affordable to users around the globe.”