The move to 64-bit has been years in the making. But we did it because we wanted to put desktop-class processing power in the palm of people’s hands. – Apple iPhone 5s design web page [emphasis added]
“I began my article on the A7 chip from Apple (AAPL) with this quote from CEO Tim Cook, and noted how Apple seems to have tipped their hand as to their future plans,” J. M. Manness writes for Seeking Alpha. “In the quote, Cook referred to Apple’s new A7 processor found in the iPhone 5s and the iPad Air. This is the very first 64-bit processor in mobile products, and is a major technological advance. It has upped the ante in the mobile processor arms race, with Samsung indicating that it will create a 64-bit processor for next year’s Galaxy S5, although it is unlikely that they will not be able to have a 64-bit OS available in this time frame (as Apple does).”
“We know how Apple likes to use its ‘war chest’ of cash to help suppliers build out capacity,” Manness writes. “This means that we can expect that the A8 will be a 20nm chip, and significant[ly] more complex than its predecessor.”
“I expect the A8 to sport a quad-core CPU, perhaps even a 5-core CPU with the fifth core running very low voltage for energy savings on background tasks. It will maintain the surprising lead it has on single core processing, and jump ahead in multi-core processing, since it will now also have 5 cores,” Manness writes. “The A8 GPU will show a huge gain, sporting somewhere between 12 and 24 processing cores. It will jump to match at least Intel’s HD Graphics 4000. Particularly in the tablet market, this will differentiate the iPad, particularly wherever the power is needed, such as scientific and medical graphic applications. Obviously, this will be ideal for the new iPad Pro, the 13 inch model that speculation has coming early in 2014. While this is only rumor, not only is there so much noise on the topic, but it is clearly the next logical step, and so I think it very likely.”
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