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Qualcomm says Apple's 64 bit A7 processor not a gimmick after all

Posted: , by Alan F.

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Qualcomm says Apple's 64 bit A7 processor not a gimmick after all
Last week we told you how silicon slinger Qualcomm said that the 64-bit Apple A7 processor was a gimmick. Noting how the 64-bit architecture would only benefit those devices sporting 4GB of RAM or more (the Apple iPhone 5s makes do with 1GB of RAM), Qualcomm's Senvior VP and Chief Marketing Officer Anand Chandrasekher said that the 64-bit chip added nothing to the iPhone consumer's experience. At the time, the executive said that Qualcomm would probably end up building a 64 bit chip anyway, since their customers were asking for it.

Now, Qualcomm has apparently reversed its position on the whole affair. On Tuesday, Qualcomm released a statement that said, "The comments made by Anand Chandrasekher, Qualcomm CMO, about 64-bit computing were inaccurate." A number of additional statements released by Qualcomm seem to indicate that the company will be producing its own 64-bit chips. As they say, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em.

"The mobile hardware and software ecosystem is already moving in the direction of 64-bit. The evolution to 64-bit brings desktop class capabilities and user experiences to mobile, as well as enabling mobile processors and software to run new classes of computing devices."-Qualcomm

source: TechRadar

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posted on 09 Oct 2013, 00:33 31

1. D.Aceveda (Posts: 396; Member since: 30 Jun 2012)

And when qualcomm does it, it'll actually be useful because Android/WP devices will have more than 1gb of ram

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 00:45 18

8. nestea (unregistered)

omg, are you stupid? read more about 64bit architecture. Using more than 4Gb rams isnt the only one advantage of it….

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 00:52 27

11. D.Aceveda (Posts: 396; Member since: 30 Jun 2012)

Are you drunk?

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 00:56 8

12. chocolaking (Posts: 494; Member since: 22 May 2012)

Qualcomm following what Apple does.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 01:20 8

17. WHoyton1 (Posts: 1635; Member since: 21 Feb 2013)

*following what samsung does!

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 03:27 7

34. promise7 (Posts: 880; Member since: 03 Jul 2013)

No, following what Apple does. Apple designed the 64bit A7 chip, all Samsung does is manufacture it for Apple.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 06:39 5

53. a_tumiwa (Posts: 373; Member since: 16 Mar 2012)

wrong, both of them following what ARM did

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 03:59 3

37. taikucing (unregistered)

following what Intel does

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 09:31 3

59. picka_vi_materina (Posts: 174; Member since: 21 Nov 2011)

After what intel took from AMD.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 12:22

65. darkkjedii (Posts: 21794; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)

Follow the yellow brick road, follow the yellow brick road. C'mon guys

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 04:01 3

39. tedkord (Posts: 11996; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)

After Apple followed what ARM did.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 02:45 4

33. xfire99 (Posts: 857; Member since: 14 Mar 2012)

Yes, but are there any 64 bits apps at Apple store? Whithout 64 bits apps, then its a gimmick and running 32 bits app with 64 bits CPU gives none advantage.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 04:28

44. nestea (unregistered)

yes, there are

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 04:09 3

41. tedkord (Posts: 11996; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)

It's the only true performance improving one. Try running a dual boot PC with one 32bit and one 64bit partition. Run the same programs in each. You will see no noticeable difference or speed up. I know I ran like that for years with s PC that had 4gb ram. The 32bit OS used 3gb of it, while the 64bit used all 4gb. Still, zero improvement.

64bit isn't a gimmick. It gives access to greater ram, but other than certain server type situations, or intensive programs (maybe CAD), it offers little to no improvements. But it's main purpose is to allow more memory address space.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 05:54

49. ollienightly (Posts: 37; Member since: 23 Jul 2013)

Yeah, but it's the only one that matters. Moving to 64-bit gives you no real performance advantage if your program uses less than 2 or 3 GB of RAM. The only (generic) performance gain comes from simplified (and more) registers.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 01:06 3

14. vincelongman (Posts: 4531; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)

I think 64-bit is somewhat gimmicky.
However the ARM v8 architecture, which the A7 is based on, is no gimmick.
Its the main reason the A7 as fast as the Snapdragon 800, even through its only dual core and has lower clock rate.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 01:16 1

16. kamejoko (Posts: 208; Member since: 10 Nov 2011)

Many benchmark use 1 core instead multi cores.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 04:20 1

43. AciMars (Posts: 24; Member since: 04 Jul 2013)

Are you drunk?

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 04:54 2

45. Arman (Posts: 47; Member since: 08 Jul 2013)

what does it have to do with his statement ?

either way,a 1.3ghz core with same score as 2.3ghz core shows a huge advantage.. let alone 2 core at 1.3ghz vs 4 core at 2.3ghz..

so single thread or multithread, no matter which benchmark you choose, A7 has better performance/ghz vs other SoCs with huge margin.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 05:26 4

47. ahomad (Posts: 175; Member since: 15 May 2012)

nope, this is inaccurate, you have to take into account the OS. if you used A7 in android and compared it with the same phone using S800, you will see a big difference and vice versa (from the cpu point of view). iOS is light (due to lake of some functionality) and more optimized as it run on one chip while android runs on tons of chips.

someone compared win98 vs win8 and said win98 would run better on i7 compared to win8 because win8 has far more functionality and alot more heavier. This is the same case here where iOS is win98 and android in win8 (I am not trolling or saying iOS bad but it is fact that android has far more functionality compared to iOS)

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 06:28

51. Arman (Posts: 47; Member since: 08 Jul 2013)

yes you are right about OS is a strong factor for performance output.. but remember that iOS 7 isn't lightweight like previous versions. lots of transparent effects, modular animations and features that has never been on an iphone.. other than that some benchmarks can show SoC raw power.. like linpack or some GPU benchmarks..

even anandtech said apple is one of the few ARM licensees that knows what they are doing and they really surprised by A7 low clock speed and real world performance..

Im sure Android will be more optimized,but believe me A7 performance isn't just about software optimization.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 09:57

62. bigstrudel (Posts: 518; Member since: 20 Aug 2012)

No you don't have to take into account the OS. There are cross platform benchmarks for a reason. They wouldn't exist if they were grossly inaccurate. The A7 simply destroys the Snapdragon 800 core for core.

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 09:47

68. C4-1996 (Posts: 8; Member since: 01 Nov 2013)

Wrong. When manufacturers test a CPU, they don't even run an OS. They put it in a machine that makes the unit run calculations and it benchmarks it, tests clock speed, stability, voltage, voltage range, And they test if each unit even works, the typical stuff they have to before they put it in a PC or phone.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 06:08 3

50. NexusPhan (Posts: 625; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)

A7 is a big improvement in the CPU over the A6 but it has nothing to do with the fact that it's 64bit.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 06:57 2

54. Googler (Posts: 813; Member since: 10 Jun 2013)

Agreed. People are getting lost in giving credit to the test speeds due to it being 64 bit. The reality is the A7 is solid, regardless of it being 64 bit architecture. Personally, I think Apple went the 64 bit route in order to save time on future upgrades, by doing the work now they paved an easier road for later work to follow.

IMO, claiming the first 64 bit phone was just bragging rights. They could have just gave the speed advantages and left it at that, people would have been sold on it being twice as fast as the previous model and been happy with that.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 08:49 1

57. Finalflash (Posts: 3136; Member since: 23 Jul 2013)

It is not to save time or anything, it is part of a bigger strategy to bring all hardware design in house. Charlie Demerjian (or however it is spelled) of semiaccurate.com predicted a while ago that Apple would switch to ARM for all of their devices (or most) soon. Back then I was sceptical but now I think he was actually right. They will probably switch their Macbook Airs to this first and then the macbook pro lines. Eventually when the chip does reach server level powers, they might even switch their mac pro lines.

They have now even started targeting graphics designers (from AMD largely) and are probably going to get that down next. 64 bit is not innovation, it is just the next logical step as it was with desktop and server.

I think this generation is going to see the degrading of a couple of tech dinosaurs thanks to Google and Apple. One is going to be Intel since they are now playing second fiddle to ARM by a large margin in terms of processor use. Second is going to be Microsoft because their OS domination has been replaced by Android and their desktop is being hammered first and foremost by themselves and then now OSX and Chrome are being brought up to the task. Also, we have the revival of linux based OSes also happening. There will finally be some decent competition in hardware and software now.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 21:35

67. Googler (Posts: 813; Member since: 10 Jun 2013)

Good points, can't argue against any of them. +1. I definitely agree about MS self imploding. I am a very long time Windows user, since 3.11 on my Packard Bell 75 Mhz machine (those were the days!). Now I despise W8 and hate what they are doing with Office. Office used to be easy to find and do things but since they introduced the Ribbon, it's slowly going down hill. Office 365 is a disgrace, IMO.

I'm no blind fanboy of Google, they have problems as well but they are truly a wild card these days. Google's business model is like nothing before and is proving daily how successful it can be. As for Apple, contradictory to a wealth of haters here, they aren't going anywhere anytime soon. Their user base is far too loyal for them to disappear.

We are definitely in the information and technology age, it's exploding in so many ways I lose count. Interesting time we live in.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 09:07

58. WindowsiDroid (Posts: 136; Member since: 22 Jul 2013)

Your are wrong, "the A7 as fast as the Snapdragon 800" ? A7 just got higher points because 5s only have 640p unlike S800 Devices uses 1080p.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 09:37

60. picka_vi_materina (Posts: 174; Member since: 21 Nov 2011)

Resolution has nothing to do when it comes to testing performance in CPU benchmarks, such as Linpack, GeekBench, etc. Resolution has an impact on GPU performance, and the PowerVR 6 beats the Adreno 330 handily. You seem young based on your response.

posted on 09 Oct 2013, 09:49

61. kabel (Posts: 83; Member since: 06 Nov 2011)

Kids, please go to sleep ...

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