Nearly two years after the debut of the Snapdragon Wear 3100, Qualcomm today introduced its follow-up smartwatch chipset.
The Snapdragon Wear 4100 series is now official. It actually includes two different models, the Snapdragon Wear 4100+ and Snapdragon Wear 4100, but they've both got an upgraded quad-core Cortex-A53 processor that's clocked at 1.7GHz and built on a 12nm process. Qualcomm says this processor is up to 85 percent faster than the Snapdragon Wear 3100's processor.
Also faster on the Snapdragon Wear 4100 is the Adreno A504 GPU, which is 2.5x faster than the Snapdragon Wear 3100's GPU, and the LPDDR3 memory.
What's notable about the Snapdragon Wear 4100+ over the non-plus model is that the 4100+ comes with a QCC1110 co-processor. This always-on ultra-low power co-processor is improved from the one found on the Snapdragon Wear 3100 in that it can show way more colors — 64,000, up from 16 on the 3100.
The QCC1110 co-processor of the Snapdragon Wear 4100+ can also handle features like continuous heart rate monitoring, sleep tracking, faster tilt-to-wake responsiveness, step counting, alarms, timers, and haptics. This all means that the main processor of the Snapdragon Wear 4100+ won't have to handle as many tasks.
Both the Snapdragon Wear 4100+ and regular 4100 include a handful of companion chips that bring support for other features. Those include Bluetooth 5.0, an improved 4G LTE modem, NFC, support for up to 16MP cameras, and Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n.
Qualcomm says its new Snapdragon Wear 4100+ and 4100 are now shipping to device makers. Mobvoi has confirmed that it's working on the new TicWatch Pro 3 with Wear OS and a Snapdragon 4100 series chipset, but no other details about that watch are available right now.
These new Snapdragon Wear chipsets look like they could offer big upgrades for Wear OS smartwatches. Faster performance and better battery life are always good things to have, and the always-on co-processor in the Snapdragon Wear 4100+ will help make watch faces much better with its features like support for 64,000 colors, constant heart rate monitoring, a smoother second hand, and more.
The smartwatch space is dominated by the likes of Apple and Samsung, but there are still Wear OS watches coming out on a regular basis. For fans of Google's Wear OS, these Snapdragon 4100 chips should offer some nice upgrades compared to the watches we've seen come out lately, especially the Snapdragon Wear 4100+ and its co-processor.