TWS earbuds are based on wireless bluetooth transmission technology, providing users with a convenient experience that completely abandons the shackles of wires. But at the same time, since the end-to-end wireless data transmission needs to go through a series of processes such as encoding, wireless transmission, and decoding, it also inevitably brings about the audio latency problem.
Among the many application scenarios of TWS earbuds, in listening to music and calling scenarios, the impact of the latency problem is still limited to the user experience. However, with the rise of mobile games and short video platforms, the use time of games and watching videos has increased, and the impact of the latency problem in the use of TWS earbuds has become more prominent. It has become one of the main considerations for consumers when purchasing a product.
Qualcomm is a chip manufacturer that spans hardware development and software services and has a comprehensive layout in the consumer electronics market. In response to the current problems of bluetooth headphones, the Snapdragon Sound audio technology platform has been launched in 2021. In terms of latency performance, it supports ultra-low latency of 89ms, which can provide an immersive gaming experience with synchronized sound and picture.
Snapdragon Sound Technology, 68ms Low Latency
The Qualcomm Snapdragon Sound technology platform integrates Qualcomm’s best audio and connectivity technologies and mobile innovations. In terms of wireless bluetooth transmission, it supports aptX Adaptive audio technology, and can adjust the dynamic bit rate according to the application scenario, taking into account stable connection, high-definition sound quality and ultra-low latency.
In terms of low-latency performance, based on the Snapdragon 888 mobile platform with QCC514x/5151/304x/305x bluetooth audio SoC, it is used in games, film and television and other application scenarios. The official data latency is as low as 89ms, which can provide audio effects that synchronize the sound with the media screen, achieve an immersive user experience, and avoid the inconsistency of the user experience caused by the asynchrony of the sound and picture.
WALT is an application for measuring audio and latency of Android terminals. In the Qualcomm test demonstration video, WALT is used to measure the time from touching the screen to hearing the sound in the headset, and the measured end-to-end delay is about 86.7ms.
In the general consensus, the latency of 200ms has no obvious impact on ordinary users. For user groups that are more sensitive to latency, and FPS games that have higher requirements for latency, Snapdragon Sound’s ultra-low latency of 89ms can also provide users with an immersive gaming experience.
At present, with the release of Qualcomm’s new mobile platform and audio platform, the new generation of Snapdragon 8 mobile platform with QCC3071/5171 can achieve 80ms. Based on the new generation of bluetooth standard LE audio, ultra-low latency of 68ms can be achieved.
Snapdragon Sound Audio Technology Platform
The Qualcomm Snapdragon Sound technology platform has been officially launched in 2021. It integrates Qualcomm’s best audio and connectivity technologies and mobile innovations to provide end products with high-resolution music, clear voice calls and extremely low game latency. All while having great connectivity and longer battery life.
Snapdragon Sound integrates a new generation of Snapdragon 8 mobile platform and Snapdragon 8 series mobile platform. Qualcomm FastConnect 6900, FastConnect 7800 mobile connection systems, Qualcomm QCC514x, QCC515x and QCC3056 series bluetooth audio SoCs, and new audio platforms such as QCC517x and QCC307x.
Audio and voice technology covers Qualcomm TrueWireless Mirroring connection technology, aptX-Adaptive audio codec technology, adaptive active noise cancellation (ANC) technology, aptX Voice ultra-wideband voice technology, and Qualcomm audio and voice communication suite.
With the rapid popularization of TWS earbuds, the products used by users have begun to update and iterate. Consumers have put forward higher requirements for the sound quality, latency, battery life, noise cancellation and other functional applications of TWS earbuds.
The impact of the epidemic and the development of mobile games and short videos have driven the rapid improvement of game and film and television application scenarios, so latency performance is more important. In the market segment, many brands have begun to launch low-latency gaming headsets to meet market demand.
Qualcomm launched Snapdragon Sound based on its innovative audio technology, which supports aptX Adaptive audio codec, realizes latency as low as 68ms, and provides an immersive wireless audio experience with sound and picture synchronization. And compared with the low-latency products on the market, it can provide high-definition wireless audio and high-fidelity call quality while having low-latency performance.