Rumor: Qualcomm, Nvidia and Broadcom to announce 64-bit processors at CES 2014

November 29, 2013

android-logo-with-64-bits-qualcomm-nvidia-broadcomEver since Apple launched the iPhone 5S with a 64-bit ARMv8 processor (the A7), Android handset makers, Google and the various System-on-a-Chip (Soc) designers have been under pressure to bring 64-bit computing to Android. Just after Apple launched the iPhone 5S, Samsung’s CEO JK Shin confirmed that the Korean company planned to ship 64-bit SoCs next year. Back in October a director in Samsung’s System LSI division confirmed during a conference call that the company was ready to manufacture its first 64-bit SoC and the current rumor is that the Samsung Galaxy S5 will feature such a chip. However Samsung isn’t the only chipmaker to license ARM’s next generation architecture.

According to new reports Qualcomm, Nvidia and Broadcom are all ready to release 64-bit quad-core processors during the first six months of 2014. This is likely true as Ian Drew, ARM’s Chief Marketing Officer and EVP for Business Development, recently wrote that  during 2014 there will be a increase in the number of ARM based 64-bit solutions available not only for mobile devices but also for the networking and server markets. The Digi Times is reporting that the three chip vendors are planning to announce 64-bit solutions soon, maybe even as soon as January during CES 2014.

Industry observers who spoke with the Digi Times are suggesting that Qualcomm, Nvidia and Broadcom have all reworked their product roadmaps for 2014 so that they can release 64-bit smartphone solutions during Q1 and Q2.

It is thought that MediaTek, who recently announced its 8-core Cortex-A7 processor – the MT6592, will be ready with a 64-bit solution during the second half of 2014 while Allwinner, another low-cost processor manufacturer which supplies processors to the white-label Chinese tablet market, will introduce a 64-bit chip based on the ARM Cortex-A53 and Cortex-A57 cores late in 2015.

In terms of 64-bit software it looks like Google is making progress on a 64-bit version of Android. Helping out is Intel which recently demonstrated a 64-bit Android kernel running on a Bay Trail processor.

Comments

  • The Doom Master

    Well 64bit only good with large amount of memory if not its kinda useless..

    • MasterMuffin

      It’s not only benefit. But they wouldn’t be in such a hurry to get 64-bit out if Apple didn’t announce 64-bit iPhone 5s though :)

      • filaos

        Of course they would. It’s only ARM’s road map. Every educated tech-savy person should know that already.

        • MasterMuffin

          I know that, 64-bit was in their roadmap for 2014, but I bet they wouldn’t be in such a hurry if Apple didn’t announce 64-bit iPhone 5s!

          • filaos

            They would be in the exact same hurry. Even if Apple hadn’t chosen to go 64bits, their A7 chip would have had the same kind of performance (witch is to say “the best”) and other chip makers would have had no choice but to go with ARMv8 ISA.

          • MasterMuffin

            Nah

          • APai

            disagree, where do you see android fans clamoring for 64 bit ? everyone’s only gripe is battery!!!

          • MasterMuffin

            Not everyone’s, there are many who just want more performance. And ARM or manufacturers don’t care about us, they just want to be able to say that they got 64-bit too, it’s great marketing stuff

          • Mozaik

            have really studied 64bit uses , mashing up assumption.

          • MasterMuffin

            Actually yes, I read a lot about this when I first got a 64-bit PC

          • Mozaik

            like

          • APai

            I never saw any HUGE improvement over 32bit. I bought my first x86-64 AMD cpu around 10 years back – the athlon 64, never saw any huge jump in performance. tried 64 linux and windows – nothing special. I remember lots of marketing crap promising the moon about 64 bit computing. turned out to be a damp squib. other than being able to have more than 4 gb ram. even that can be done away with PAE on a 32 bit system (for windows)

    • Guest

      This is a very common misconception, but that’s not all 64 bits does. It would be possible to make a 32 bit processor that could access more than 4gb of ram. You get bigger registers and can compute bigger instructions faster.

    • http://www.garysims.co.uk garysims

      The benefits of 64-bit computing on mobile devices has very little to do with memory addressing. In fact ARM’s 32 bit architecture can already address more than 4GB. Please see the second half of the following article for a small introduction on why 64-bit processors are better: http://www.androidauthority.com/no-128-bit-cpus-yet-319222/

    • Shark Bait

      ARM’s 64 bit processors include more instructions which give big performance boosts too, so its more than a ram thing

      • Grahaman27

        For AES encryption/decryption only. Everything else is the same

  • Balraj

    Apple effect !!!!
    Lol…amazing…

    • filaos

      No. ARM effect. Wake up.

      • Balraj

        Lol…It’s not arm effect
        I think you just don’t want to accept the fact…
        The article says oem re did they roadmap for 2014
        That’s definitely Apple effect….

        • APai

          actually, I dont see ANYONE on android boards clamoring for a 64 bit processor. sorry, @filaos is right. it’s just ARM’s architecture has matured to a point where they can have one way to go forward with 64 bit, and make it that much more efficient. if it were apple alone, why dint they go 64 bit last year ?

          • mobilemann

            i think it was more the point that when apple’s a7 came out, people were freaking that it was for no reason. Now it’s coming out across the board, and a ton of kids on this board “get it” all of a sudden. It’s cute.

            (technology is not a team sport)

          • APai

            what was your point ? i exactly said the same thing, except you coming across and replying condescendingly. thank you, your geniusness.

      • Mozaik

        And do you know one of the co-founder of ARM is , its apple ,lol. Hate to admit.

        • filaos

          That’s beside the point fanboy. And you’re wrong : Apple didn’t found ARM. They deeply collaborated in the early 90s, and used to possess many shares of ARM (until they sold all of them when Jobs came back).

          • Mozaik

            thats why they are good at understanding SoC .which is why there todays current flagship is on top of specs ,you have hats off to them , other like samsung, tegra or qualcomn fighting over who has the most ghz apple proved them that specs means shit.

          • http://www.garysims.co.uk garysims

            Mozaik, good summary… I was working for DEC at the time on a product which used the StrongARM. When the lawsuit was settled the project got cancelled overnight!

          • Mozaik

            more proof for you

            Apple-ARM work would eventually evolve into the ARM6, first released in early 1992. Apple used the ARM6-based ARM610 as the basis for their Apple Newton PDA. In 1994, Acorn used the ARM610 as the main central processing unit (CPU) in their RiscPC computers. DEC licensed the ARM6 architecture and produced the StrongARM. At 233 MHz, this CPU drew only one watt (newer versions draw far less). This work was later passed to Intel as a part of a lawsuit settlement, and Intel took the opportunity to supplement their i960 line with the StrongARM

          • filaos

            I don’t see the point.
            I just said :
            “They deeply collaborated in the early 90s, and used to possess many shares of ARM (until they sold all of them when Jobs came back).”

          • mobilemann

            they co-founded it with acorn. Why would that bother you, or make you call him a fanboy?

            If who arm holdings was created by bothers you, you probably shouldn’t be calling anyone fanboy.

  • olfa

    Rather than 64-bit processor, I prefer 64-hours battery life.

    • Shark Bait

      Yes! is a shame theirs no moores law for batteries

      • Cao Meo

        lol

    • MasterMuffin

      64 weeks! YEARS! MILLENNIUMS!

      • Amine Elouakil

        NOT ENOUGH! The univers age is 14.7Billion years and it’s still in it infancy you want something that would last at least till the sun dies which is in 10 billions years or so :o

        • MasterMuffin

          If only modern smartphones could last for even 10 years :/

          • Amine Elouakil

            lol they can the problem is that they become obsolete, i still have some old phones/smartphones lying around and perfectly working lol

          • MasterMuffin

            That’s why I said “modern”, the old ones were durable!

      • john

        175316160Wh, under assumption that smartphones use around 20 watts on average, which is quite a lot, but let’s be generous here.

        If the phone was Li-ion polymer with voltage of 3.7V in mAh:

        47382745945.9 mAh

        Panasonic 18650B have around 265Wh/kg, so that would be
        661.5 metric ton.
        Hope you’ve been doing some lifting lately.

        • APai

          simple answer to it is to create tiny wormhole around the phone – and on the other side have a power plant connected (with redundancy) ! :P

    • Balraj

      Let’s start with a day of battery life :-P

      • http://www.garysims.co.uk garysims

        I have a Nexus 4 and I get two days of battery life with moderate use and one day with heavy use (but no 3D games).

        • Balraj

          One day..you mean 24hrs or 12hrs..
          Heavyuusage means lots of internet, more screen on time, apps usage?
          Causefrfriend recrecently bought a nexus4 with kitkat n it doesnt last a day

    • Roberto Tomás

      get one of the new 8 core a7 chipsets and android 4.4 — HMP will let it power off unnecessary cores, and you should get days of battery life as a consequence (as long as you don’t push the system the whole time)

    • john

      Batteries larger than 3000mAh or even single cells that are larger than 2000mAh are not reliable. Most laptop, EV, etc manufactures tend to use multiple smaller high density cells because of: a) reduced efficiency of larger battery cells, b) reliability, better to have few smaller cells fail independently and compensated by the battery management rather than having a large battery fail which can significantly affect the battery pack performance, safety, and cost of replacement. ie) stability. It is in fact cheaper to make a battery pack of equal capacity out of bigger cells than smaller cells. But you sacrifice stability, energy density-how much energy you are getting per weight- and cycle life. This is why Tesla is using hundreds of tiny Panasonic cells per car.

      Battery management: BMS, PCMs(protective circuit modules), chargers, UPS solutions all these becomes really complex as numbers of battery cells in a battery pack increase. Cell balancing etc.

      Also, the biggest problem with really high energy density batteries are that they suffer in terms of cycle life. This is not just the chemical limitation of the durable cathodes/anodes, but also the temperature, rate of reaction, power, etc. ie) high density batteries regardless of their chemical difference have tendency to have lower cycle life then the lower density batteries. The common measurement of cycle life is how many charge/discharge cycles a battery can endure and still maintain 80% capacity.

      Put it simply. If you want more battery life, the optimal solution(stability, cost, size, and complexity-wise) is to have a replaceable battery phone and multiple battery packs. If your phone is of unibody design or non-removable battery then buy cases with extended battery or USB chargers. Putting bigger battery in a phone is more difficult than you think.

      • APai

        yes, good one! not to forget the side effects – like bloating battery/ exploding due to various reasons. etc.
        that’s where our manufacturers tend to focus on the speed aspect of things, or anything that’s marketable rather than addressing the battery department the elephant in the room! unless we have significant improvement in the battery department – all aspects, i guess we will continue to have the elephant amongst us.

  • Oli72

    Apple takes second place is first losers. Android high end phones already out performing apple. When android do come with 64 bit another leap for android.

    • The Doom Master

      depends if phone Ram will be high cause Apple 1 GB ram is very disappointing.

      • Balraj

        For ios it’s not
        Many reviewers have said 1gb is not a deal breaker…it just shows how demanding android is
        Or maybe oem fool us into believing more ram better performance.
        It’s all about optimization.

        • APai

          lol, apple is still very low resolution, it doesnt have to drive extra pixel for the demanding games. nothing wrong with android – its just that they have higher resolution and gives people great games. apple has a tiny screen. if apple comes up with a larger screen/ higher resolution and higher ram, what will you have to say ?

          • Balraj

            I replied to the person who said 1gb ram on iPhone is disappointing…
            I didn’t mean to say Apple is better..
            Apple screen are almost 720p but still android phonewith ssame resolution have higherram
            My point is android oem are unnecessary using high ram & high resolution display…

          • APai

            “android oem are unnecessary using high ram & high resolution display…”
            that’s absolutely not the case. people want and they do run multiple things at the same time. they really do stuff that’s out of the box, unlike the narrow confines of apple.

            higher resolution on a larger phone absolutely makes sense. note 3 for example really pushes the envelope, and yet I have seen so many people use up much of the ram, the battery is one of the best in its class. many people I know use it to its limits. already. new games/ higher res/ it just falls into place. all that “additional” ram is put to good use.

    • abazigal

      Outperforming Apple when it comes to cheating at benchmarks, maybe.

      Or did you not get the memo about how the dual-core A7 processor is outperforming quad-core processors with higher clock speeds?

      • Oli72

        Get over it dude. Android is 3-4 years ahead of apple.

        • abazigal

          How so?

          The way I see it, Android is really little different from Windows, in terms of the both the strengths and weaknesses it brings to the mobile computing scene.

          Take the issue of piracy for instance. Through its IOS app store, Apple has managed to largely make this problem a non-issue, because the only way to get an app you want is to pay for it legitimately (barring jailbreaking). This means that app developers are able to charge a reasonable price and still earn a decent profit, because they don’t have to factor in lost sales from piracy, which in turn makes them more willing to develop for IOS. Consumers benefit from reasonably-priced apps and a wider selection of apps overall. The tight quality control process also makes the problem of viruses and malware a non-issue.

          Given Android’s purported 80% market share, you would think Google would take a more pro-active stance in managing this issue. Instead, the ability to side-load 3rd party apps and download torrents directly to Android devices has set the task of combating software piracy back at least 10 years.

          Which is a shame, really. Google had the excellent opportunity to start on a clean slate with Android, but instead chose to perpetuate the same problems inherent on desktops.

          • K.

            I take the possibility to do whatever I want with my phone or computer over the Apple App store. And saying that you cannot use illegal software on Apple products is just stupid or a lie.

        • Pranav Arora

          But armv8 isn’t on Android yet. And apple used it already. So Apple is 6 months ahead of android, at least in bringing out a new architecture.

    • Balraj

      No offense, I’m not a Apple fan but get this right
      Qualcomm has to clock it’s processor to 2.3ghz and add extra two core to compete against Apple’s dual core 1.3ghz processor
      Apple makes great hardware, just live with it…

      • APai

        cores dont mean squat. if they were so good, why dint they do it with one core at half that frequency, that way they could thumb their noses even further ? this is a stupid argument I keep hearing ALL the time

        • mobilemann

          because physics exist. They do make great hardware. One day, when your less of a frothing at the mouth fanboy, it won’t bother you.

          you’re sad, bro.

          • APai

            frothing fanboy of what, by saying that you are exactly one of what you describe.

        • Balraj

          Atleast you believe they are good….
          Your expecting them to make powerful chips with lesser core lol
          Maybe you should ask why 8 core processor are needed on mobile lol
          so much of power..but why? Btw let’s spk android with mobile point of view only okay
          Don’t start of with other android devices

          • APai

            “Atleast you believe they are good….”
            yes, but not to the point that they are good at whatever they do, and they are not exactly gold standard at everything that they do. which is what apple fanboys think. they’ve been proved wrong in multiple areas.

            “Your expecting them to make powerful chips with lesser core lol”
            that’s exactly what I am laughing at. why do you think parallel processing exist ? will you laugh at a super computer saying if it were designed by apple they’d make it in a single *powerful* processor ?

          • Balraj

            Atleast you got to accept that Apple made a good job with a7 processor
            Just imagine what wouldhave hhappened if a7 was quad core & 2.3ghz
            My point is more number doesn’t mean better performance
            What goes into it matter

          • APai

            “Atleast you got to accept that Apple made a good job with a7 processor”
            its funny, i never mentioned they did a bad job! I just hold all the companies doing a good job (including a supposedly *lowly* mediatek, I respect them because they have been a great leveler – had qualcomm and apple had th whole pie, they would be like intel, charging insane amounts of money. )

            “Just imagine what wouldhave hhappened if a7 was quad core & 2.3ghz”
            it would have been too hot, and it would have been a power hog.

            “My point is more number doesn’t mean better performance, What goes into it matter”
            exactly what i was trying to say all the time. which is why i had said cores dont mean squat – its the results that matter. why are you hung on to cores ? i simply do not get it. people get to different solutions by different ways. apple had a huge hammer and strikes the nail in one go. qualcomm might do it with a smaller hammer and a 4 strokes, mediatek might do with with 2 hammers alternating each stroke. in the end ALL of them got their job done.

          • Balraj

            First thing first..Apple did not do a bad job with a7
            It wouldn’t have been too hot orbbattery hog
            Apple wouldhave ttakenccare of it
            My point is sum1 can make faster & better processor..
            Why can’t other?This yyear 2.3ghz, next 2.5 then 3ghz
            On top of that 8 core processor !!!
            That’swhat iirritates me….

          • APai

            “That’swhat iirritates me….”
            why ? because you think only apple defines standards. if the TDP is tolerable and within the limits and is not a battery hog, how does it matter how many cores a gpu/ gpu has ? its a technical spec. if it irritates you that someone is using cores to market, then its your problem! doesnt make any product any better or worse

          • Balraj

            I think your not getting my point

            Less resource better performance

            Anyways leave it

          • APai

            does apple use two cores that are 4 times power efficient than that of qualcomm ? you must be joking!

          • Balraj

            Like I said, your not getting my point…
            I’m not tellingaApple is great.My point is different

          • APai

            how is it different ? whats your point with the number of cores if apple’s processors have the same power efficiency as its competitors ?
            I am not one of those who think more cores = better. nor do i think less core = more efficient/ better. for me the number of cores is simply a different design.

          • Balraj

            different design or maybe incapable..idk but do you think 2.5ghz is needed or even 3ghz
            What about 8 core…
            If Qualcomm > mideatek
            Then I’ll put Apple on top of Qualcomm
            Why fool ppl, make them believe 8 core is necessary….

          • APai

            do you buy phones because they have less cores ?

          • APai

            “If Qualcomm > mideatek”
            value for money wise I’d put mediatek > qualcomm > apple

            was * retina * necessary ? if yes, why did apple come out with ipad mini with ordinary screen AFTER they already had retina screen ? apple said 3.5 inch is plenty and then they came up with 4 inch phone. they laughed at a small tablet and then came up with one. during antenna gate they said you are holding your phone wrong – this is a company that dictates terms to the users. jobs laughed at anyone using a stylus, laughing at it saying you’d have to file your fingers are stuff. sheer hubris – imagine this – our fingers weren’t meant for touchscreens either! apple has a history of creating the reality distortion field. i believe you might be a victim :)

          • Balraj

            jobs laughed at stylus used then…sammy reinvented stylus
            what you pay is what you get…mediatek processor might be cheap but not powerful..also small tab form factor became successful because of ease of carrying..idk if you have seen but many in Bangalore itself use tab as phone & commuting device
            my point is why go for higher core count or high ghz…why cant one achieve it with less resources…if one can do it why cant others…im not tellin if apple can make dual core processor as powerful as quadcore…others should also make just dual core processors
            i want ppl to use less resources…also what do you think the price of 8 core processors are gonna be in 2014…so why gimmick ?

          • APai

            “jobs laughed at stylus used then”
            the thought process continues over at apple.

            “mediatek processor might be cheap but not powerful”
            it plays real racing pretty well, also NFS most wanted at 1280×720, it’s close to an iphone 5! for that low price!

            “why cant one achieve it with less resources”
            define resources please. I assumed it was heat and battery consumption – and what the a7 achieves is marginally ahead of the snapdragon 800. so what resource is it better at ?

  • Amine Elouakil

    And elephants do not fly…..

  • Tamadrummer94

    Pointless without the software. Unless Google will have a working 64-bit version of Android ready, I don’t see a reason for the mad rush. The ARM v8 architecture is where it’s at.

    • Brian Shieh

      Android, being on Linux, has always been ready for 64 bit

  • NeedName

    OK. . . for everyone making the, “must have X RAM” or “rather have x battery life”. . .

    let’s understand what ARM is bringing with their 64-bit chips.

    1. The A53 core will double battery life with same level of performance as today’s flagship phones.

    2. The A57 core will more than double the performance of today’s flagship phones with same battery life.

    3. neither 1 nor 2 require more RAM as they come about due to the new armv8 instruction set that embedded in the new cores — this is why the A7 performs so well.

    4. the a53 & a 57 cores can be combined into a very efficient and powerful big little SoC. . . that will put today’s flagship devices to shame in both performance and battery life.

    If you want much better battery life, then complain about the screens and battery tech, as ARM’s SoC are doing pretty darn good these days.

    • Balraj

      But that’s all theory right?

      • NeedName

        no.
        that is fact. they already have the samples, etc. .

  • APai

    “Ever since Apple launched the iPhone 5S with….”
    sorry , no one gives a flying *uck about 64 bit. :)

    • mobilemann

      yet you are here, typing, and were in the 5s posts, typing about it then too. For not caring, you spend a lot of time… caring.

      • APai

        this is not a 5s post at all. i was merely interjecting. can you please point me where people are clamoring for 64 bit computing ? it’s quite simply a marketing tool for these companies running out of ideas to make us buy the latest fancy stuff. there’s zero tangible evidence of a huge boost in performance or whatever. it’s just another evolutionary step in computing. improved SoC. It’s like the megapixel race running its course.

  • Boonlumsion Piyapon

    I think it’s will be 64bit & 8core. (Moore’s law)

    but as long as device keep it’s slimness it’s will have same battery life.

  • Roberto Tomás

    this requires the two big american manufacturers that haven’t already gone 64 bit to jump ship and abandon their plans for 2014 and 2015. Nvidia was going to release Tegra 5 early next year, the Kepler IP and Tegra 6 late next year, with real Tegra 6 products only reachingthe market in 2015. Tegra 5 is still 32 bit, so Nvidia was commited to 32 bit until 2015. Qualcomm is just beginning to sell their 8974ACs, with 8084s beginning early next year and high bin (equivalent of ACs) coming late next year. Again 64 bit wouldn’t have been until 2015 at the earliest. They are going to have to write off some major loses either in 2013 or 2014, because they wastes so much time on the wrong path.

  • wawaeewa

    thorium… even 1 gram of it (costs 5 dollars a gram) is enough to power power a car for more than 100,000 miles. why not try thorium batteries

  • john

    Jesus, from the specs, they look a lot like server CPUs, numerous cores, low clock speed, large cache size, numerous IOs. With the look of things, ARM taking huge chunks out of server market and embedded devices, x86 is quite simply…boned.

    • APai

      will be an interesting few years to see how the server tech will shape up. with AMD throwing their hat in the ARM ring.