Right now, one of the main advantages that iOS products have over Android ones is the fact they’ve got the A5 backing them. Apple maybe focused on aesthetic design but they’re no slouch in the engineering department either. The current generation of Tegra 2’s ca’t even compare to the A5.
Well, that’s about to change. Nvidia has already started showing off its Tegra 3 CPU, code-named Kal-el, and like the Kryptonian it’s named after, it looks to be super-strong, featuring four processing cores, twelve GeForce graphics units and stereoscopic 3D support. The tech demo for the Tegra 3’s capabilities is called “Glowball” and it features the Tegra 3 showing off its graphical chops.
One of its achievements is it features true dynamic lightning options on mobile devices. It also integrates the accelerometer inside the device, helping you affect the demo. Tilt the device and the gravity in the scene changes and drapes respond accordingly. All of these movements are simulated using Kal-El’s four CPU cores – no canned animations, just pure simulation. The demo has a ball rolling all across a truly interactive environment, with the background responding in a very real manner. The difference is striking when the demo is moved to a dual-core CPU; everything looks worse and much slower. It’s the power of the quad-core that makes it all possible and its what it will be bringing to new Android devices.
Tegra and A5 both use ARM’s CPU blueprints, however Nvidia has an edge in two areas: graphics expertise and power efficiency. The company uses its own GeForce designs for mobile graphics – not to mention its in-house expertise in graphic cards – to create a more efficient way to render graphics. Currently, Tegra 2’s are the ones found in most Android tablets – expect an upgrade to Tegra 2 3D, then to Tegra 3.