Given that Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chips are found in so many smartphones today, it makes sense that the company would think about making its own smartphone at some point. Now, the inexplicably named Smartphone for Snapdragon Insiders is here and for just $1,500, it can be yours.
With such a high price point, you’d expect the phone to offer something new that you couldn’t buy elsewhere. However, that’s not the case. The Android phone is quite similar to the ASUS ROG Phone 5 Ultimate (not shocking, as ASUS designed it).
Furthermore, with the name of Smartphone for Snapdragon Insiders, you’d expect the device to be rocking Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 888 Plus, but it doesn’t. Instead, it underwhelmingly packs the company’s less powerful Snapdragon 888 processor, one that’s found in several other phones. There’s nothing “insider” about that.
Interestingly, however, the Smartphone for Snapdragon Insiders is using Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon Sound classification. This ensures hi-fi playback at up to 24-bit 96kHz, which makes the phone an interesting draw for audiophiles and the like. Qualcomm will also be throwing a pair of Master & Dynamic earbuds in to sweeten the deal.
Qualcomm’s smartphone does tout otherwise solid specs, though, which is great for a flagship Android phone. It features a 6.78-inch 144Hz Samsung OLED display (with Gorilla Glass Victus) with support for true 10-bit HDR and Variable Rate Shading, 16GB of RAM, 512GB of storage, a rear fingerprint scanner with Qualcomm’s Gen 2 3D Sonic Sensor tech, and a solid 4,000mAh battery that supports the company’s Quick Charge 5 standard. It also supports 5G, Wi-Fi 6E, and Bluetooth 5.2.
The device has a 24MP front-facing camera and a decent triple camera setup at the rear. The array features a Sony IMX686 64MP image sensor, a 12MP Sony IMX363 ultrawide sensor, and an 8MP telephoto lens with 3x optical zoom. Qualcomm says it will offer a “professional-quality camera” experience and even adds on features like auto zoom and object tracking. Video-wise, we’re looking at 4K at either 30 or 60 frames per second, 8K at just 30 fps, and (should you need it for some reason) 720p at 30 fps.
The Smartphone for Snapdragon Insiders launches in August. It will initially be available to the U.S., UK, Germany, and China, with global availability rolling out later.