Pixel 8 line to benefit greatly from upgrades to the Google Tensor 3 SoC

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Pixel 8 line to benefit greatly from upgrades to the Google Tensor 3 SoC
The Pixel 8 series, expected to be unveiled in October, will be the first devices powered by the Google Tensor 3 chipset. Tipster Kamila Wojciechowska revealed to Android Authority all of the juicy details related to the Tensor 3 SoC. First of all, the latter carries a codename of zuma and will feature a nine-core configuration of 1+4+4. This will consist of one Cortex-X3 prime CPU core running at 3.0GHz, four Cortex-A715 performance CPU cores with a clock speed of 2.45GHz, and four Cortex-A510 efficiency CPU cores running at 2.15GHz.

While this configuration should help the Tensor 3 track the performance of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, it won't be as powerful as the upcoming Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 and MediaTek's next flagship smartphone chipset since those will benefit from Arm's recently announced Cortex-X4 prime CPU core, the Cortex-A720 performance CPU core, and the Cortex-A520 efficiency CPU core. The Cortex-X4 delivers 15% more performance using 40% less power according to Arm.

The Tensor 3 will be able to provide the Pixel 8 line with Arm's Memory Tagging Extensions (MTE) that will help beat off some memory-based attacks. And because the Tensor 3 will use Arm's v9 architecture, Pixel 8 users will get to enjoy a 64-bit-only experience. The Tensor 3 will feature Arm's Mali-G715 GPU which might feature 10 cores as opposed to 7 on the Mali-G710 GPU featured on the Tensor 2. As a result, game players might see more realistic lighting, reflections, and shadows thanks to ray tracing.

The Pixel 8 line will get an upgrade to Universal Flash Storage (UFS) 4.0 from the UFS 3.1 used on the Pixel 7 series. Already employed by the Galaxy S23 series, UFS 4.0 delivers a sequential read speed of up to 4200MBps and a sequential write speed of up to 2800MBps. Compare that to the sequential read speed of up to 2100MBps and sequential write speed of up to 1200MBps for UFS 3.1. Data will transfer faster, and with more power efficiency.

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We probably will not see any change to the modem used on the Tensor 3. The Tensor 2 upgraded to the Exynos Modem 5300 after the Pixel 6 series had serious connectivity issues with the Exynos Modem 5123 used with the first Tensor chipset. The Tensor 3 will use the Exynos Modem 5300 although it will be a different variant than the one used on last year's Tensor SoC.

And lastly, the Tensor 3 will sport a new version of Google's Tensor Processing Unit (TPU) AI accelerator. Codenamed "Rio," the chip will run at 1.1GHz compared to the 1.0GHz clock speed of its predecessor. Google claimed that the TPU on the Tensor 2 was 60% faster for camera and speech tasks so we might see a decent improvement in AI features this year.

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