More leaks show the LG G6 shipping with the older Snapdragon 821 SoC
It was rumored early last month that the upcoming latest and greatest flagship smartphone from LG could be running on last year's "old" Snapdragon 821 SoC instead of the upcoming Snapdragon 835 due to exclusivity agreements between Samsung and Qualcomm. Now, a new leak from Semiaccurate is claiming that the LG G6 will indeed ship with the Snapdragon 821 and that the smartphone will share many of the same internal features as the existing V20 smartphone including the high-end DAC and waterproof chassis.
Samsung has Priority
The Snapdragon 835 will be manufactured in a new 10 nm process by Samsung, so the South Korean conglomerate will have first dibs on the Qualcomm SoC for use on its smartphones. The source is predicting that initial production of the processors will not meet the demands of all other manufacturers until at least the end of May when manufacturing is expected to pick up. Thus, an April launch time frame for the Galaxy S8 equipped with the Snapdragon 835 is a real possibility. Competing manufacturers would then have to wait a couple of months before the new Qualcomm chip becomes available for them to use.
Economically, the choice to pair the LG G6 with the Snapdragon 821 is understandable given the tight relationship between Samsung and Qualcomm. LG may want to launch the LG G6 early instead of delaying it further to prove that the design and concept of the smartphone can work even without the Snapdragon 835. Additionally, LG could have a head start in sales and advertising before the Galaxy S8 behemoth becomes available to the public. Nonetheless, the G6 would have to skip on some of the newest features introduced with the Snapdragon 835 including Bluetooth 5.0 and Quick Charge 4.0.
Once the new Snapdragon becomes available for all manufacturers, however, the smartphone world is expected to bloom with high-end models beginning this Fall. LG may expand its LG G6 family with higher-end SKUs and hardware to make up for utilizing the older Snapdragon 821 early on.