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The flood of octa-core smartphones has begun, here's what to expect

Posted: , by Chris P.

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The flood of octa-core smartphones has begun, here's what to expect

For good or bad, a month ago, Chinese MediaTek officially launched its all-new MT6592 chipset, powered by eight ARM Cortex-A7 cores, and there's no stopping the flood now. In a typical Android fashion, more is always better, and while there's definitely an argument to be made about the practical feasibility of as many cores, it seems likely at this point, that 2014 will see quite a few devices packing the MT6592 or a similar system-on-chip from the likes of LG, Qualcomm, Exynos, Huawei, Allwinner and Rockchip.

As this is still some pretty new tech, established big brands aren't exactly killing themselves in an attempt to reach the shore first, but that doesn't mean they don't mean to eventually. Truth be told, even if we do assume that octa-core processors are nothing more than show, we still see a future ahead for the seemingly redundant chips. If anything, history has shown that smartphone buyers sometimes get sold on significantly more gimmicky features.

So, who's taken to the task of carrying out the largely ungrateful task of heading the first charge? Chinese companies, for the most part, at least for now. The same, lacking the financial resources of incumbents, are often forced to look for each and every possible scenario that would serve to differentiate their wares, and MediaTek's new chip fits that bill perfectly. That being said, we're already seeing some palpable interest from large companies, such as HTC, LG, Alcatel (TCL), Huawei and Vivo, though we are yet to witness this materialize into an actual product. At this point in time, the number of devices that have/are set to receive the new octa-core chip easily exceeds two dozens, though we've narrowed it down to the more noteworthy ones. Facts of smartphone industry life apply, of course, so there's no knowing whether all the devices on the list will ultimately end up in customers' hands. Nonetheless, if you've caught an episode of octa-core fever, you'll likely want to keep tabs on them.

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posted on 26 Dec 2013, 05:46 4

1. roozbeh101 (Posts: 54; Member since: 31 Mar 2012)


all are good on paper ! but only the ones with the best kernel - gpu rendering optimization will win ! samsung and LG are doing fine! but these chinese need to optimize kernels better!

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 07:40

17. itsdeepak4u2000 (Posts: 2772; Member since: 03 Nov 2012)


Also I heard about navigation problems with sensors. So Qualcomm, NVIDIA, Samsung and LG are best.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 09:01 2

22. Ashoaib (Posts: 2355; Member since: 15 Nov 2013)


I have phone with mediatek processor and mediatek is super slow n laggy... who says ios doesnt lag? I used 4s for nearly two years and it lags on many occassions... once my good old friend argued with me about super smoothness of ios and declaring my piece as a faulty unit, I took his 4s and his 4s was lagging too within 5 minuts. Then he had no answer expect that I am crazy and can make any phone lag... by the way what does ios has? sure it will not lag in the hands of brand obsessed ifools...

posted on 31 Dec 2013, 01:52

47. mikelemon (Posts: 93; Member since: 21 Nov 2013)


Its true you are crazy

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 09:29 1

24. LordDavon (Posts: 107; Member since: 19 Sep 2011)


The issue with this processor is that it has a Mali-450 GPU, while other phones with quad or big.LITTLE cores are being built with Mali-628 GPUs. The GPU is being used more efficiently in our phones, and as Apple has shown, is the main champion in a mobile device. I highly doubt the 8 core MediaTek chip is going to gain much footing outside of China for high-end devices until the GPU is increased.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 05:53

2. starandmountain (Posts: 51; Member since: 01 Apr 2012)


How many cellphone makers are there in China? I have to say that i really like their competiveness and drive to perform, hopefully more of them will come to europe because the market here is a little bit boring.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 06:03 8

5. Chris.P (Posts: 299; Member since: 27 Jun 2013)


Hundreds. Of course, not all of them are worth much mention, as manufacturing smartphones in China isn't as challenging an endeavor as it is elsewhere, seeing as both equipment and know-how is readily available.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 09:25

23. ilovesmartphone (Posts: 7; Member since: 30 Oct 2013)


And also a lot of copycat... lol

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 16:47 2

40. rusticguy (Posts: 2828; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)


Copying and improving is what "Lean Manufacturing" is all about. Everyone including Apple does it.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 06:03 2

3. KiranPAUSER (Posts: 73; Member since: 15 Feb 2013)


Octa core are future, even its a glimmik now but at the same time its a selling factor that people likes.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 06:03

4. Duketytz (Posts: 513; Member since: 28 Nov 2013)


What is the update support like for China-made phones? If they are quick or on par with the current top dogs, I don't mind giving them a shot since they look pretty slick and great innards. Hope they will be released worldwide!

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 06:15 2

6. zuckerboy (banned) (Posts: 898; Member since: 22 Dec 2011)


octa core will lags on android again but on wp and ios 2 cores is enough to blizzard performance

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 06:52 6

11. Teja171 (unregistered)


Its not true. the ios and wp operating systems aren't as complex as android is.
They dont offer so many features/functionality as android does..

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 07:30

15. zuckerboy (banned) (Posts: 898; Member since: 22 Dec 2011)


you r wrong it is true... android lags even devices has 2 gb of rams, 2ghz speeds and 4 cores but ios and wp doesnt lag eventhough they have 1gb ram and 1 ghz speed.... when you jailbreak your ios device you have widgets, homescreen animations , live wallpapers but they also works fluidly...

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 07:58 7

18. roozbeh101 (Posts: 54; Member since: 31 Mar 2012)


android is a linux-core platform! SDK machine and so on... it is much complex and featured system than ios and wp! my nexus 7 2013 never lags! and i got a galaxy i9000 with 4.4.2 android that lags minimum ! those laggy days of 2.x.x androids are over! deal with it!

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 08:02 6

20. roozbeh101 (Posts: 54; Member since: 31 Mar 2012)


and also ios and wp ! are limited and everybody is waiting for an improvement is features and costumize ability ! while android is just going further to be perfect! fast/open source/ smart/lagfree with tons of features!

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 08:55

21. zuckerboy (banned) (Posts: 898; Member since: 22 Dec 2011)


lol your nexus isnt lagging bcuz its google's device... my sister has galay s3 with 4.3 and lags as hell... it takes 1000 years to rotate screen :D what a performance.... and galay s4 is lagign as well my friend has it and compplains about that... it doesnt important that android has tons of feature , important thing is smooth performance...

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 12:52 1

34. roozbeh101 (Posts: 54; Member since: 31 Mar 2012)


I know what you imply blame but it on samsung with those useless ugly bloatwares not android! i mean why in hell the rom itself uses that much ram ! 700mb!!!!

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 08:00

19. gallitoking (Posts: 4690; Member since: 17 May 2011)


you stated is not true but according to your answer you agreed with him.. in Android it will lag because Android offer many features/functionality .. there...

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 12:28 1

30. kanagadeepan (Posts: 705; Member since: 24 Jan 2012)


Yes... Always Empty truck is faster than fully loaded one.. But which one is useful for the money you spent???

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 14:48

38. zuckerboy (banned) (Posts: 898; Member since: 22 Dec 2011)


good example but not for mobile os

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 13:53

37. xoxoGeorges (Posts: 207; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


Lulz that damn excuse.
The only lag-free droids are the ones with 3GB RAM which is ridiculous.
The fixed hardware for Apple/Windows works because they know exactly where to go. If Google set fixed hardware standards for OEMs to follow, they wouldn't face that problem but it won't be open anymore, it's all about compromise.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 10:14

27. av911 (Posts: 149; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)


Right, when I search "iOS 7 lag" there are 0 results. /s

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 16:55 1

41. rusticguy (Posts: 2828; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)


U surely must have asked SIRI then :)

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 06:22

7. eldyagustius (Posts: 146; Member since: 30 Oct 2013)


No hope for LG when it comes to software updates. Don't know what they'd do with flagship phones. I'm G2 user and I know that the 4.2.2 isn't a big deal for me. But there's many older phones updated to 4.3. Why isn't there any confirmed news about the kitkat update?

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 06:36 2

9. xperiaDROID (banned) (Posts: 5629; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


LG is already rolling out the KitKat update to the G2 owners in South Korea. So, don't worry, you will get it soon.
http://www.phonearena.com/news/Android-4.4-starts-rolling-out-in-Korea-for-the-LG-G2_id50671

And there are many phones still haven't get updated to 4.3, some of them are jumping to KitKat. For instance, the Huawei Ascend P6 (currently on 4.2, will jump straight to 4.4 KitKat maybe in January), the Lenovo K900 (currently on 4.2, no news about 4.3 or 4.4 but I think Lenovo will update it soon).

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 07:27

14. MANGUELPR (Posts: 31; Member since: 15 Aug 2013)


LG Optimus G had already KitKat too in many countries.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 09:56

25. LoveHater (Posts: 160; Member since: 09 Oct 2013)


....update was for 4g support not 4.4...
and on the front of android lagginess,, google is going to change their game,, art is the first one ,,,hopefully more comes in future which we don't hav idea.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 10:14

28. WakaFlakaD (Posts: 370; Member since: 30 Apr 2011)


I am a LG G2 user as well. Honesty, going from 4.2 to 4.4, how big of a difference does it really make? I am not trying to argue, but the days of Froyo and Gingerbread are over. Those are the days that update REALLY matters. We will probably get our updates at the end of Q1. For now, let's just be happy and continue to "knock knock" on our phones lol

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 10:40

29. freebee269 (Posts: 528; Member since: 10 Aug 2012)


i find 4.4.2 to be a nice upgrade to 4.2.2. i have slimkat on my at&t lg g2 and it is buttery smooth. also i enjoy the new google launcher and "ok google". i find i use it alot more than i thought i would. it's a little bit of a performance upgrade because it can now be used with devices that have 512mb ram, but it's also a feature upgrade. so i think the upgrade from 4.2.2 to 4.4.2 is warranted.

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 01:51 1

44. WakaFlakaD (Posts: 370; Member since: 30 Apr 2011)


I found the apk for the (Ok,Google) launcher, while it is cool to use on its own, it takes away the knock-on feature. That is the main reason I am using this phone. It's cool to get better battery, yet I still charge it every night. This phone do lasts the whole day (I am a heavy user)

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 11:05

45. freebee269 (Posts: 528; Member since: 10 Aug 2012)


Try slimkat ROM if you have an at&t g2. It has knock on and off with Google launcher and very good battery life with a kernel that has added options like under volting and volume increase. It's the best of all the worlds.

posted on 30 Dec 2013, 01:46

46. WakaFlakaD (Posts: 370; Member since: 30 Apr 2011)


Unfortunately I am with T-Mo. Many people reported about the echo issue in call. I will wait until a more stable ROM is there. This is the very first Android phone I am using that still running in stock...ever since that Nexus One

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 06:31 1

8. pongkie (Posts: 504; Member since: 20 Aug 2011)


my pc is still quad core. things are changing very fast

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 06:40 1

10. xperiaDROID (banned) (Posts: 5629; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


Octa core, here we come!

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 07:01

12. XaErO (Posts: 156; Member since: 25 Sep 2012)


Don't want that Octa-Core processors .. I believe people will soon know that quality Quad Core processors are way much better to get real practical performance in day-to-day life on a smartphone.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 07:07

13. Tsepz_GP (Posts: 841; Member since: 12 Apr 2012)


2014 is looking awesome already! Can't wait for the Exynos based phones :D

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 07:34

16. N-fanboy (Posts: 538; Member since: 12 Jan 2013)


The biggest question here is 'WILL ANDROID STOP TO LAG?', i hope so. But my xperia z lags somtimes but thats not acceptable.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 10:00 3

26. JMartin22 (Posts: 1242; Member since: 30 Apr 2013)


That's not Android, that's your OEMs custom launcher. It doesn't matter how good the hardware is, if someone like Sony doesn't optimize it's software offerings to work efficiently with the hardware, there will be moments of latency. That's why some phones feel more fluid than others and why installing a custom ROM drastically speeds up the UI

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 13:33

35. elitewolverine (Posts: 1902; Member since: 28 Oct 2013)


Jmartin, techies love to tinker and install stuff. For a large large large majority of people with warranties and no-know how, installing a rom is not their cup of tea. They just want it to work. And is why iOS7 and WP usually feel more fluid, because of the control they have on the OS itself. And even then custom roms do not always play nice with google services. Just look at the custom rom forums, bugs everywhere imo that is, and of course bugs that never get fixed cause the rom dies or gets dropped...

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 12:38 1

32. AppleHateBoy (unregistered)


You can't help it. Smartphones are following the foot steps of pc's. PC's became responsive after they got rid of mechanical hard drives. Smartphones are the same. The storage solutions they use are incredibly slow. The galaxy note 3 has a random write speed of 2.2 MBps. Modern mainstream ssds exceed 400 MBps. Unless tablets and smartphones gain a suitably fast storage solution. Performance will continue to suffer.

I still dream of the day when tablets/smartphones gain at least one-eighth of today's ssd speed.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 12:28

31. apple4never (Posts: 969; Member since: 08 May 2013)


how long till we have an intel knights corner in a phone ?

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 12:41

33. AppleHateBoy (unregistered)


A decade??

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 13:48

36. xoxoGeorges (Posts: 207; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


Until Qualcomm starts making Octa-Core devices no other chipmakers will be able to surpass the Quad Core 800/805.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 16:24

39. COZMAN (Posts: 99; Member since: 28 Nov 2013)


Octacore? This is a joke. Even quad is over doing it. Get creative with features instead of power that we cannot use and do not require to run our apps.The cell market has become predictable and boring.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 21:10

43. Joshing4fun (Posts: 1051; Member since: 13 Aug 2010)


Agreed. I miss the days where phones came in all crazy shapes and designs. Now theyre just black and white rectangles with fancy names for stuff under the hood that nobody can see/feel.

posted on 26 Dec 2013, 20:06 1

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


Too bad single core performance is more important than multi core performance because thats what governs most UI elements. Even quad core is big time overkill. Optimized dual core Android devices like the Moto X are ideal IMO. Apple's A7 also gets it right by increasing the performance by improving the architecture and keeping the clock speed low to keep power consumption in check.

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