Apple’s new iPhones shift smartphone camera battleground to AI

Apple’s 7 nm A13 Bionic is the fastest chip ever in a smartphone. Performance cores process complex tasks faster than ever, while custom efficiency cores handle everyday tasks — helping to deliver a huge leap in battery life. The CPU’s two performance cores are up to 20% faster and use up to 30% less power. And its four efficiency cores are up to 20% faster and use up to 40% less power. The Apple‑designed GPU is up to 20% faster and uses up to 40% less power. Perfect for high‑performance gaming and the latest AR experiences. The 8‑core, Apple‑designed Neural Engine is up to 20% faster and uses up to 15% less power. It’s a driving force behind the triple‑camera system, Face ID, AR apps, and more. Two new machine learning accelerators on the CPU run matrix math computations up to six times faster, allowing the CPU to perform over one trillion operations per second. To help developers leverage the machine learning power of A13 Bionic, Core ML 3 works with the Machine Learning Controller to automatically direct tasks to the CPU, GPU, or Neural Engine.

Stephen Nellis for Reuters:

The technology industry’s battleground for smartphone cameras has moved inside the phone, where sophisticated artificial intelligence software and special chips play a major role in how a phone’s photos look.

“Cameras and displays sell phones,” said Julie Ask, vice president and principal analyst at Forrester.

Apple added a third lens to the iPhone 11 Pro model, matching the three-camera setup of rivals… Apple also played catch-up inside the phone, with some features such as “night mode,” a setting designed to make low-light photos look better. Apple will add that mode to its new phones when they ship on Sept. 20…

During the iPhone 11 Pro launch, executives spent more time talking its processor – dubbed the A13 Bionic – than the specs of the newly added lens. A special portion of that chip called the “neural engine,” which is reserved for artificial intelligence tasks, aims to help the iPhone take better, sharper pictures in challenging lighting situations.

MacDailyNews Take: It’s not number of camera lenses that matter, it’s the custom chips and software powering them and nobody has anything near to what Apple has because they not only design the chips, they design the operating system, too. Apple’s custom‑built A13 Bionic focuses on machine learning across the entire chip — enabling experiences that are not found on any other smartphone. It’s so fast, so powerful, and so intelligent, it’s simply years ahead of any other chip.


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