We’re used to hearing (or reading) the word Snapdragon regarding processors, but there is a new Snapdragon in town! If you’ve been frustrated by breaks in connectivity, audio dropouts and glitches, latency issues, and poor audio compression when listening to audio over your wireless headphones, Qualcomm Snapdragon Sound is a phrase you’ll want to remember.
Snapdragon Sound optimizes interactions between the Qualcomm Technology on your mobile device and your wireless headphones or earbuds, allowing them to work together to deliver a “more robust and seamless wireless listening experience.”
Latency, or Bluetooth audio lag, can be an annoying issue when watching videos or gaming on your mobile device while streaming with Bluetooth headphones. If you’ve ever watched a video or played a game where you saw lips moving out of sync with the audio, then you know what I’m talking about.
To solve these latency issues, Snapdragon Sound can support Bluetooth latencies as low as 89 milliseconds (which Qualcomm says is 45% lower than a leading competitor) for a more immersive gaming experience and a better video watching experience.
Snapdragon Sound also helps to eliminate some of the common Bluetooth pain points, which include choppy audio, dropped calls, and shorter battery life.
Snapdragon Sound supports high-resolution 24-bit 96kHz audio, ultra-low latency, improved pairing, and crystal-clear voice quality. If you prefer to listen directly from your mobile device, Snapdragon Sound incorporates the Qualcomm Aqstic DAC, designed to support formats of up to 384kHz 32-bit PCM and DSD with ultra-low THD+N.
The human ear is highly sensitive to glitches, latencies, and other challenges which commonly occur when streaming music, video conferencing, or gaming over wireless connections. By focusing end-to-end, we are looking to deliver innovations to solve common consumer pain-points across virtually all audio interaction points.
Qualcomm Technologies is uniquely positioned to provide tremendous value to customers with Snapdragon Sound and help them quickly commercialize products differentiated by great sound quality. Our system-level approach aggregates multiple technologies and the latest products from across our mobile and audio platform portfolios to achieve our vision of delivering high-resolution, wired quality audio, wirelessly. – James Chapman, vice president and general manager, Voice, Music and Wearables, Qualcomm Technologies International, Ltd.
With the earlier stumbling blocks to using Bluetooth finally being eliminated, true wireless Bluetooth experiences are coming into their own — and it’s never been a better time for that to happen. During the pandemic, many of us have been working remotely, and we need clear voice and video calls when we connect over our Bluetooth headsets and earbuds. At the same time, gaming has exploded in the past year, along with the demand for higher definition music streaming. If your Bluetooth headphones or earbuds aren’t giving you a great experience or it’s draining your device’s batteries, it can be incredibly frustrating, and it can sour you on the entire experience. Snapdragon Sound aims to fix that.
Xiaomi and Audio Technica have been announced as Snapdragon Sound’s first customers. We can expect to see devices that will support Snapdragon Sound later this year. As these products are released, we’ll find the Snapdragon Sound badge on those optimized devices, which will make it easier to identify the phones, earbuds, and headphones that support it. We can expect to see other devices like PCs, watches, and XR glasses designed to deliver the full benefit of these exciting audio features in time.