ARM has announced that they have entered into a long-term licensing agreement with Samsung covering current Mali graphics processing units (GPUs) as well as GPUs developed in the future. Mark Dickinson, general manager with ARM, says the agreement “will enable Samsung to deliver rich and exciting user experiences to consumers on any device” while noting “hundreds of millions of consumers have benefitted from the longstanding collaboration between Samsung and ARM.” Read more
A major component of Samsung’s business deals with mobile processors, and their Exynos CPUs are always top-notch chips even when compared to offerings from Qualcomm and NVIDIA. However, Samsung typically relies on other manufacturers for the GPU in their mobile devices, but it looks like that might change next year.
A new report suggests Samsung is in the process of developing its own GPU to pair with its Exynos processors, and it’s slated for release as early as mid-2015. If that date is accurate, we’ll probably miss seeing it in the Galaxy S6, but there’s a good chance we could see it end up in the Galaxy Note 5 or whatever else succeeds the Note lineup in the second half of the year. Read more
NVIDIA is planning to show off their forthcoming GPU, Project Logan, at SIGGRAPH this week. Project Logan based on NVIDIA’s Kepler architecture which currently powers desktop and laptop computers. NVIDIA started Project Logan a year ago as part of an effort to unify their graphics architecture across all form factors. Perhaps the biggest challenge for mobile devices was scaling things down to the mobile power envelope of a tablet or smartphone. As the project progressed, NVIDIA also recognized business models were changing and decided to build Project Logan in a way that could be licensed to others. NVIDIA claims the design of Project Logan will consume one-third the power of current leading GPUs while providing at least the same rendering capabilities. Read more
NVIDIA announced via their blog today that they are preparing to take things in a new direction by licensing their GPU cores and visual computing patent portfolio to other manufacturers. NVIDIA notes that during recent years, as PC sales have been in a decline, sales of other computing devices have been increasing. Going along with this changing landscape, consumers are demanding faster, crisper, high definition displays that produce vivid images no matter what device is currently in use. Driving those displays are the GPUs and NVIDIA is in a good position to capitalize as they have been a long time leader in the GPU market for PCs and more recently, they have been successful in the Android device market with their Tegra line of chips. Read more
One of the biggest gripes we hear from Android developers is the poor performance of the emulator. The emulator is basically how devs test their apps while developing on a PC, and until now the emulation was all done in software. Today, Google announced in their developer’s blog that the emulator has gotten a significant performance boost and other improvements, including:
- GPU support
Android 4.0 uses the GPU to improve overall performance, and the emulator now does the same thing by funneling OpenGL calls directly to the host PC’s own GPU.
- More Hardware Feature Emulation
It’s now possible to use a tethered Android device to supply inputs for sensors and multi-touch input. Bluetooth and NFC coming later.
- Improved CPU Performance
A recent release of the developer tools included x86 system images and host drivers, providing access to the host CPU natively, and offering significantly improved CPU performance.
These are all huge improvements that will help developers make apps more reliably and in a more timely manner. Happier devs mean more and better apps. Kudos to Google for continuing to think about the developers by improving the developer tools.
View a speed comparison video after the break.
A new tidbit has come to light thanks to a couple of Android engineers, Romain Guy and Chet Haase over at the Android Developers blog. They’ve touted that as part of the Android 4.0 ICS update, devices should experience better hardware acceleration by default. It turns out that this is the same hardware acceleration that can be found in our beloved Android 3.2 Honeycomb for tab’s however, for the tab version, enabling of the GPU was required via command line. Meaning, experience for the end user post ICS is going to change up a bit.
We should see smoother and faster UI scrolling and navigation throughout the device entirely. Animations should be quick and fluid with this latest iteration. It shouldn’t matter whether or not a dev has enabled the GPU acceleration. Because lets face it, though we’re not particularly all iPhone or Windows Phone 7 fans, we have to admit that scrolling on those devices tends to always be naturally smooth and quick. And though we love Android, most devices tend to have a bit of a “choppy” experience. Well, here’s to hoping that all changes with the roll out of Ice Cream Sandwich. But we’ll let you all be the judge of that. Now you just need to make sure that you have an ICS enabled and upgradable device when it comes.
[via Android Dev]
Alright, so I wouldn’t call it a “spanking” per say, but I would definitely call it…unexpected, sort of. We all know that the OMAP 4430, housed in the LG Optimus 3D, boasts some pretty hefty dual-core action. And when put to the test by AnandTech, along side Nvidia’s Tegra 2 and Samsung’s Exynos 4210, we can see it slightly shining through and coming out on top in the browser and graphical benchmark department. Dual-core CPU’s are becoming quite the norm around these parts as the competition is expanding rapidly. As I always say, choice is good and you can never have too much of it, I think. Im looking forward to the day when a device is released with nothing less than dual-core CPU’s and performance is taken to a whole new level as a result. A good CPU combined with a great GPU, a big screen, HDMI out yada yada yada, and it’s bon voyage for my PC. How about you? Do you favor one of these dual-core processors over another? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.
Qualcomm has announced that by 2012, we should start seeing quad-core mobile chips in many mobile devices. This comes just days after we all started seeing dual-core tablets and smartphones becoming much more common at MWC, we just can’t be satisfied with dual-core and 4G. No sir, we need quad-core chips on 8G wireless networks at Lucas like lightspeeds!
Seriously though, these APQ8064 quad-core chips will bring 150% increase in performance over ARM-based chips, and a 65% decrease in power consumption, which is what any mobile device is really after when you get right down to it. Other new chipsets will include the single-core MSM8930 and the dual-core MSM8960. The MSM8930 will best be used for smaller devices with LTE modem chip, while the bigger brother dual-core MSM8960 is designed with smartphones and tablets with multi-tasking priority for power.
[via MobileAttack, PRNewswire]
Texas Instruments has a new set of video processors out that are making some pretty big claims. The new DaVinci DM37x combine a 1GHz ARM Cortex and 800MHz C64x+ DSP, and enable 720p HD video. According to TI, the new hardware “offers 50 percent increase in ARM performance, 40 percent increase in DSP performance, double the graphics performance with 40 percent less power consumption over OMAP3530 device”.
Those are some pretty big expectations. Texas Instruments says that their new video hardware has support for both Linux and Android as of right now, and support for Windows CE should be coming in Q4 of this year. Full presser below.