Qualcomm is brilliant at designing chipsets, not so much at naming them. At the end of 2018 it introduced the Snapdragon 8cx, a chipset meant for Windows on ARM devices. Since then it has launched other “c” devices – the higher performance ones get the “cx” suffix, the mid-range devices get just “c”. Now the company has rethought the branding and decided to change it to Snapdragon X Series.
This comes after “extensive analysis” and feedback from consumers who though that the “c” names were too easy to confuse with the Android-bound Snapdragon chips. Among many advantages of the new branding, Qualcomm touts that the “X identifier distinguishes our PC platforms from other Snapdragon product categories”.
What about your modems, Qualcomm? They are named Snapdragon X too, e.g. the Snapdragon X75 and X72 from February. Oh, well. At least the company promises a “clear, simplified tiering structure helps users navigate our platform capabilities from mainstream to premium”, which is a common complaint for PC processors, GPUs and mobile chipsets alike.
This rebranding is preparation for the launch of the new Oryon-based chips and will mark a clean break between Snapdragons using only ARM-designed CPU cores and Snapdragons with Qualcomm’s in-house core. Again, this is for the Windows on ARM branch of the family, it’s not clear if and when Oryon will be featured on phones.
The latest additions to the “c” family are the Snapdragon 8cx Gen 3 and the 7c+ Gen 3, which were unveiled in December 2021. There have been multiple rumors of the Snapdragon 8cx Gen 4, though we now know that won’t be its name (“Snapdragon X8”, perhaps?).
Expect to see the first devices powered by the Snapdragon X Series chips in 2024. There will be several tiers ranging from just 4-core all the way to 12-core CPUs.