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The Apple A8 SoC in the iPhone 6 might hit 2 GHz core clock speeds for the first time

Posted: , by Daniel P.

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The Apple A8 SoC in the iPhone 6 might hit 2 GHz core clock speeds for the first time
Android's flagships have been breaking the 2 GHz CPU barrier for a while now, but even Apple's most advanced 64-bit A7 chipset is still lounging at the 1.3-1.4 GHz range. This, however, is about to change with the eventual A8, if a new supply chain report is to be believed.

Apple's upcoming chipset, that is expected to make a cameo in the iPhone 6 and the iPad Air 2, is said to feature cores with the maximum clock of 2 GHz for the first time in the franchise history. Previously we've heard that Apple's new chipset will sports cores clocked as high as 2.6 GHz, but that might be the A8 version for the iPad Air 2, which is always more powerful than the model which goes into Apple's iPhone. The A8 chipset is expected to be 64-bit again (of course), and sports two cores again, while there are a bunch of Android handsets with four, six, and even octa-core silicon. The amount of cores is in no way representative of a chipset's overall speed and productivity, though, so it doesn't serve as more than bragging rights for theoretical mights. 

Apple's A8 silicon is allegedly hammered out by the TSMC foundry, gradually replacing Samsung as a supplier, and will sport a new 20nm process, which would mean a theoretical increase in performance with a simultaneous decrease in power consumption, compared to the 28nm method that most current chipsets are built with.

source: CNbeta via G4Games

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posted on 11 Jul 2014, 06:26 4

1. karamelakimo (Posts: 109; Member since: 26 May 2014)

That's great news if true
But I still prefer a quad core with 1.5Ghz more than 2 core with 2Ghz
The increase in clock speed will affect battery consumption more I think while increase in code number will motivate it
We have to wait and see

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 09:49 8

22. Berzerk000 (Posts: 4275; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)

But then you would sacrifice single core performance, which is always important. I like what Apple's doing now with 2 high performance cores rather than 4, 6, or 8 lower performance ones. Especially since most of the apps in the App Store are optimized for single/dual core operation, and using a quad core CPU would mean that they would have to add quad core support in iOS 8 (if they haven't already) and developers would need to add quad core support to their apps. I'm sure the long term benefits would be worth it, but short term it's really not, especially since the dual core A7 is working without any hiccups.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 10:25 1

23. karamelakimo (Posts: 109; Member since: 26 May 2014)

Good point :)
But any way I think the increase in clock speed won't reach 2ghz that's opposite to usual apple thoughts and believes
I wish apple will make a surprise

posted on 13 Jul 2014, 03:29

36. pulkit1 (Posts: 354; Member since: 03 Jul 2014)

I think it might because A8 will be manufactured on a 20nm process node vs 28nm on a7 so apple might put those power gain to increase performance rather than decrease the already low power draw . As the bricks are coming off the walled garden of iOS increasing the single threaded performance will be a smart move.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 06:27 3

2. Dude2014 (Posts: 448; Member since: 12 Feb 2014)

64bit Snapdragon 810 will beat this for sure. Qualcomm has been leading the industry for almost 3 years and it's very likely to keep going. Snapdragon FTW! :)

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 06:34 3

4. ArtSim98 (Posts: 3535; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)

Yeah, but I think this will be better than 805. So Snapdragon will have to wait a bit before getting back to 1st

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 06:40 19

7. LetsBeHonest (Posts: 1524; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)

My opinion, Qualcomm got so lazy and became so slow since they reach the top of the hill.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 06:45 7

8. ArtSim98 (Posts: 3535; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)

Yeah. They shouldn't even have bothered to develop 801 and 805. The difference to 800 is so minimal. And to consider that 805 came after almost a year after 800.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 08:08 2

15. vincelongman (Posts: 5068; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)

The 801 is almost only a better higher binned 800, its just overclocked and more efficient, but with added support for eMMC 5.0 (I think that's the only new thing)
IMO the 805 should have been already for the Q2 phones like how last years Q1 had the 600, and the 810 should be planned for Q3 phone like how last years had the 800
IMO Qualcomm has gotten lazy, I hope a couple major OEMs switch to the Nvidia K1 for their phones later this year to show Qualcomm that they do need to keep innovating if they want to keep their dominance

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 06:38 16

5. LetsBeHonest (Posts: 1524; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)

Snapdragon 810 will be awesome. But Apple's current A7 SOC is already on par with current snapdragon processors(true they have less pixels to deal with) . And it did take over more than one year for others to come up with 64bit SOC(hipe they improve the amount of ram too). Also they achieve this much great result with such under clocked processors. Also their GPU are really amazing. I think they deserve big credit for their processors and GPUs they handle games very smoothly with great graphics. It'll get even better with A8 processors.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 06:39 4

6. Iodine (Posts: 1395; Member since: 19 Jun 2014)

Qualcomm newest chips are marginally better than 9 months old A7. Whatever Apple will try that 2x CPU and GPU again, no chance for Qualcomm if they succeed in that.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 07:08 1

11. lpratas (banned) (Posts: 398; Member since: 09 Nov 2011)

But the Snapdragon 810 it's more powerful than Apple A8 isn't it? Or you have doubts about that? Don't forget that the Snapdragon 810 has Cortex A57 processors and are 4 at least at 2.0GHz and are true Cortex A57 Arm processors, unlike the A8 chipset that it is a custom 64 bit cpu which if it is in the sequence of the A7 it is not even A57 cpu, which can be more powerful.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 07:37 4

14. Napalm_3nema (Posts: 2236; Member since: 14 Jun 2013)

The A7 was custom A57, so what makes you think the A8 won't at least be A57? Couple that with the new clock speed and the newest Rogue GPU, and this thing should destroy most, if not all, SoC's.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 09:05 4

20. livyatan (Posts: 867; Member since: 19 Jun 2013)

Per clock, the Cyclone core in the A7 chip is almost certainly more powerful than Cortex A57.
It is a desktop - like(performance roughly comparable to Core i3 ULP variants) 6-wide design(compared to 3-wide Cortex A57) with more advanced memory interface and cache addressing.

Cortex A57 is a much smaller core though, and draws less power.
This means that four A57 cores will have roughly comparable die size and power consumption to two Cyclone cores.

Comparing a pair of this speculative new Cyclones running at 2GHz because of the 20nm lithography, we should see better single threaded performance than in a quad A57 setup at 2GHz.

Overall, in raw performance multi threaded benchmarks the Snapdragon 810 should have the edge over the A8 because of four A53 cores adding up to the score.

But make no mistake, the 2+GHz A8 chip will be more than fast enough for anything you throw at it, and will very probably be the most potent mobile SoC to be seen this year, especially if it comes paired with the amazing PowerVR G6550 GPU that is superior to even the Kepler from Tegra K1

Here's my two cents - it will be the first time ARM chip to beat the Core i3 notebook chips from Intel

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 12:32 1

28. TylerGrunter (Posts: 1543; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)

Agree on all exept one:
1st: the PowerVR G6550 just doesn´t exist.
2nd: even the most powerfull one of the PowerVR, the GX6650 is expected to be bit short both in features and performance of the Tegra K1. Yes, the Tegra K1 is so powerful that they should clocked the GPU over 1 GHz to beat it!! A feat I don´t expect they´ll do even at 20nm.

My expectations for the A8: increase of 2x in GPU performance (a bit short ot the TK1) and 50% increase in CPU performance.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 14:59 1

30. livyatan (Posts: 867; Member since: 19 Jun 2013)

According to Imagination Technologies, the G6650 (my 6550 was a typo) outperforms the Kepler K1.
The guy from IT blog was very clear in that claim

posted on 12 Jul 2014, 05:29 1

34. renz4 (Posts: 319; Member since: 10 Aug 2013)

heh mobile is interesting isn't it? we have IMG, Qualcomm, ARM, Nvidia. i heard Mali T760 also have the potential to match or beat nvidia TK1 gpu. it is also interested to see nvidia maxwell with next year tegra.

posted on 13 Jul 2014, 04:17

37. pulkit1 (Posts: 354; Member since: 03 Jul 2014)

Really ? and you know this how? and as history tells us qualcomm never uses stock arm design rather they make their own core designed from arm reference design . Apple does the same thing .
Chances are either they will be very close . Apple dual core @ 1.3ghz A7 in iPad air performs just a little shy of quad core 2.5ghz 801 chip .

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 07:17 5

12. medicci37 (Posts: 1335; Member since: 19 Nov 2011)

Not that impressive since there's no real competition in the processor industry like there was a few years ago. Releasing a overclocked s800 as a new chip is pathetic. The 805 isn't much of a increase either. Idk why anyone who loves tech would want 1 company to dominate. I'd like to see a chip that focuses more on graphics... Kinda like the Tegra line but better

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 10:38 2

24. renz4 (Posts: 319; Member since: 10 Aug 2013)

will see how that goes. A8 will be custom build by Apple. the 810 will be using vanilla A57/A53 combo just like others. i'm interested to see which implementation is better. the vanilla ARM core or custom build one like A8

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 11:05 1

26. superduper (Posts: 151; Member since: 20 Oct 2013)

If Qualcomm has been 'leading the industry', then where is their industry leading 64-bit processor? And why did their executives get spooked by the A7 last September?

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 06:30 3

3. LetsBeHonest (Posts: 1524; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)

Wohh... That's impressive.. But i doubt Apple will ever go over 1.8ghz at least not for iphone.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 06:47

9. vuyonc (Posts: 1062; Member since: 24 Feb 2014)

And Apple will do almost nothing special with the power. Again.

posted on 13 Jul 2014, 04:18

38. pulkit1 (Posts: 354; Member since: 03 Jul 2014)

Really? apple has a better track record of doubling the performance of their chips than qualcomm .

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 06:54

10. Sreddy (unregistered)

this should be a monster!

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 07:36

13. nlbates66 (Posts: 328; Member since: 15 Aug 2012)

means nothing.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 08:23

16. sar44 (Posts: 278; Member since: 14 Apr 2014)

for what? for noobs?

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 08:25 1

17. xfire99 (Posts: 938; Member since: 14 Mar 2012)

Qualcomm/Exynos is faster in multi core perfomance.
Apple A7/A8 faster in singel core perfomance.

posted on 13 Jul 2014, 04:20

39. pulkit1 (Posts: 354; Member since: 03 Jul 2014)

That is because you are comparing a dual-core to quad core soc working at double the clock speeds . Power draw of A7 is about 2.6 W vs 3.5W for snapdragon 800.

posted on 11 Jul 2014, 08:48 2

18. vishalaestro (Posts: 81; Member since: 08 Dec 2013)

apple's A7 processor is powerful than snapdragon 800 and 801 .apple's single core performance is soo good in a way that the performance is similar to the intel's core2duo models.the reason is apple's instruction width is 6 so it can issue 6 instructions at a time while the snapdragon models can issue only 2 instructions at a time.the architecture used by the apple is similar to the intel based solutions in the sandy bridge architecture .remember apple quoted "desktop class performance"?for further details visit this page .an excellent articlehttp://www.anandtech.com/show/7910/apples-cyclone-microarchitecture-detailed

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