IDG News Service - Just as tablets with dual-core processors start to hit shelves, chip makers are now shipping samples of quad-core chips that could make the devices even faster.
At the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Nvidia announced a new quad-core Tegra chip code-named Kal El, which the company claims is two times faster for Web browsing than the current dual-core Tegra 2 processor, which is used in tablets from Motorola, LG, Asus, Viewsonic and Toshiba. Qualcomm announced a new quad-core Snapdragon chip, which will offer speeds of up to 2.5GHz per core and consume 65% less power than current ARM-based CPU cores, according to a company statement.
The first mobile devices with Kal-El chips could come as soon as August and deliver up to 12 hours of battery life while playing 1440p video, said Ken Brown, an Nvidia spokesman. Qualcomm did not respond to requests for comment on when its chips would reach devices, but in the statement said test units of its new Snapdragon chips could start shipping in the second half of this year. The companies did not provide clock speeds for the processors.
The first mobile devices with Kal-El chips could come as soon as August and deliver up to 12 hours of battery life, said Ken Brown, an Nvidia spokesman. Qualcomm did not respond to requests for comment on when its chips would reach devices, but in the statement said test units of its new Snapdragon chips could start shipping in the second half of this year. The companies did not provide clock speeds for the processors.
The quad-core chips announced in Barcelona are based on the ARM architecture, as is one announced by Texas Instruments last week.
The use of these chips is a sign that smartphones and tablets are trying to grow up and be more PC-like, said Jack Gold, principal analyst at J. Gold Associates.
Nevertheless, quad-core chips could be overkill as use of all cores could drain battery quickly, just as in laptops, Gold said. High-definition graphics applications are notoriously power-hungry, and Nvidia's Kal El chip deploys many graphics cores that could contribute to the battery drain, Gold said.
"When you are deploying four cores and 12 [graphics] cores, you're sucking battery. Will users be willing to put up with that?" Gold said.
Average users who mostly browse the Web and make phone calls will be satisfied with mobile devices with dual-core processors. Users who want blazing performance may opt for quad-core chips, but may have to prepare to keep devices plugged in all day, Gold said.
The success of quad-core chips in mobile devices will also depend on the number of applications that take advantage of all processing cores, Gold said. Mobile applications are still being written for single- and dual-core processors, and developers will need to change the way they write applications so processing is equally distributed across multiple cores, Gold said.
- Visual tour: The Android tablets of MWC
- MWC video: VMware's Android app separates business and pleasure
- MWC video: Nvidia shows quad-core Project Kal-El
- Visual tour: Android phones take over Mobile World Congress
- 2011 a 'pivotal year' for NFC payments, say RIM, Orange and KT execs
- Tablets to be supercharged by quad-core chips
- Smartphones driving you nuts? Industry execs take note
- Android smartphone makers seek unique positions
- Full-duplex radio breakthrough can double Wi-Fi capacity
- RIM, Nokia, DoCoMo dodge Google's 'dumb pipe' menace
- Why Projects Fail CIOs are expected to deliver more projects that transform business, and do so on time, on budget and with limited resources.
- The New Business Case for Video Conferencing: 7 Real-World Benefits Beyond Cost-Savings This whitepaper provides insight into the value of video conferencing in today's business environment, and how organizations are using visual collaboration to find...
- Gartner Magic Quadrant for Client Management Tools The client management tool market is maturing and evolving to adapt to consumerization, desktop virtualization, and an ongoing need to improve efficiency.
- Audit Ready and Asset Optimized: The Solid Promise of an Intelligent Software Asset Management Solution In this paper Frost & Sullivan examines the benefits of enterprise-grade Software Asset Management solutions, and how these solutions serve as the convergence...
- Live Webcast Best Practices: How to Improve Business Continuity with Virtualization VMware solutions include a range of business continuity capabilities to help ensure availability for applications across your virtualized environment. Learn More>>
- Live Webcast
Transforming Finance, Procurement and Supply Chain Effectiveness with Cross-Functional Analytics
Date: May 6th, 2014
Time: 1 PM EDT
Attend this Webcast to find out how Oracle's packaged analytic applications enable line-of-business managers to examine all...
- Live Webcast LIVE EVENT: 5/7, The End of Data Protection As We Know It. Introducing a Next Generation Data Protection Architecture. Traditional backup is going away, but where does this leave end-users?
- Redefine Your IT Operations: Remote Office IT Has Never Been Simpler Join us to see why PC Pro named Dell PowerEdge VRTX the "2013 Server of the Year." PowerEdge VRTX may be just what...
- LIVE EVENT: 5/7, The End of Data Protection As We Know It. Introducing a Next Generation Data Protection Architecture. Traditional backup is going away, but where does this leave end-users? All Hardware White Papers | Webcasts