back to article Watt the CHIP!? ARM pops out THE most powerful 64-bit Cortex for mobes'n'slabs

ARM today reveals its most impressive design yet: the 64-bit Cortex-A72 processor core, aimed at giving next year's smartphones and tablets extra oomph for games and such. We're told a 16nm A72 has about twice the performance of a 20nm Cortex-A57, and consumes about half the power. Chip manufacturers are expected to package …

  1. Steve Crook
    Coat

    Change of venue

    "The company's presentation of the blueprints to industry analysts and press this morning in San Francisco"

    I know there are good reasons for doing this sort of thing in SanFran, but if they're a Brit company it would be nice for once to have them make the announcement from somewhere else. For instance...

    "The company's presentation of the blueprints to industry analysts and press this morning in Budleigh Salterton"

    1. fruitoftheloon
      Thumb Up

      @Steve Crook: Re: Change of venue

      Steve,

      Couldn't agree with you more, there is a fantastic cafe 100 yards from the sea.

      Cheers,

      Jay

    2. Uncle Ron

      Re: Change of venue

      I agree and upvoted your post. However, the customers and clients and the most influential press (sorry elReg) for this thing are in Silicon Valley (and further 'west,') so I guess we're never going to see a product announcement staged in Enfield.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Change of venue

        While ARM are a British company, they have design centres worldwide and I think the high-end cores like this are designed in Austin Texas. Also, their CEO is based in silicon valley (think he has children in schools there so move to Cambridge wasn't feasible).

      2. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

        Re: Re: Change of venue

        "the most influential press (sorry elReg) for this thing are in Silicon Valley"

        Hey! :-) We're IN Silicon Valley. I'm sitting in the Reg's San Francisco office. That's why I was able to be at the press conference on Tuesday next to Bloomberg et al.

        C.

    3. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: Change of venue

      Yeah I can imagine doing it in Cambridge and taking the press down to the Robin Hood (when it still existed - it got vandalized into an Eatin' Inn lately). Or maybe not.

    4. John 156
      Coat

      Re: Change of venue

      "The company's presentation of the blueprints to industry analysts and press this morning in Budleigh Salterton"

      For a successful launch, it would, of course, need to be on market day.

    5. Marcus Aurelius
      FAIL

      Re: Change of venue

      No but you could hire somewhere like Kings College Cambridge for your announcement and have a suitably awe-inspiring venue for your product release.

      Kings even have a web page for it... http://www.kings.cam.ac.uk/conference-dining/

    6. ChrisC

      Re: Change of venue

      "The company's presentation of the blueprints to industry analysts and press this morning in Budleigh Salterton"

      And heeeeeeeeeeeeeeres your host, Giles Wemmbley-Hogg...

      ...no, on second thoughts, hosting it in San Francisco is probably safer.

  2. frank ly Silver badge

    I'm wondering

    When will we see this pair in a Raspberry Pi?

    1. 080

      Re: I'm wondering

      "When will we see this pair in a Raspberry Pi?"

      That would make a really hot Pi

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I'm wondering

        You sure? The most power hungry Pi uses up to 3.5 W.

      2. Tom 7 Silver badge

        Re: I'm wondering

        I'd like to see this in a laptop too.

        1. Z80A

          Cortex-A72 in a laptop

          There is a small UK group called Vero Apparatus (http://wiki.vero-apparatus.com/) working on such a laptop with the A57 chip. They are likely to quickly switch to the A72. Since most laptops consume 10W to 15W or more and the processor and display are the main energy sinks, a 2W processor can double the battery endurance in many cases.

      3. Desidero

        Re: I'm wondering

        Please, "crispy Pi"

      4. John Sturdy
        Boffin

        Re: I'm wondering

        Linaro have announced a standard for form factor and connector layout for credit card sized SBCs: http://www.linaro.org/news/linaro-announces-96boards-initiative-accelerate-arm-software-development/

        And the first board available in this shape is quite decent: https://www.96boards.org/products/hikey/ (8-core A53 (64-bit) at 1.2GHz).

  3. P. Lee Silver badge

    Oi Samsung!

    Couldn't you drop the new cores into the S6?

  4. Tromos
    Joke

    Not impressed with 16 nanometres

    Does nobody do 'brain the size of a planet' any more?

  5. Andy Roid McUser

    The difference

    16nm A72 has about twice the performance of a 20nm Cortex-A57, and consumes about half the power.

    "We have a strict power budget; this is a fanless design,"

    And this is the thinking that caught Intel napping after a very large meal. Do much much more, with much much less.

    ARM is the British tech success version of Apple, not the richest company in the world by virtue it doesn't manufacture anything but almost everyone in the world owns an ARM designed component. Announcements should be made from Blighty first and then pop over the water to say the same thing but with slightly more fan fare and cheerleaders.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: The difference

      ARM is the British tech success version of Apple

      Hardly when you consider both the collaboration based business practices and the money earned.

      Still great to see the good ideas still coming. Chips based on this design really could give Intel something to worry about in its still disgustingly profitable server sector.

      1. Martin an gof Silver badge

        Re: The difference

        ARM is the British tech success version of Apple

        Hardly when you consider both the collaboration based business practices and the money earned.

        But would ARM even exist without Apple? ISTR that ARM came from a collaboration between Acorn, Apple and VLSI with Apple putting a lot of the money in and Acorn essentially providing the IP. Back in those days (post the BBC deal) Acorn were hardly cash-rich as there weren't enough people like me stumping up for the Archimedes and the RiscPC. Without Apple's injection of the folding stuff we might today be remembering the ARM chip in the same nostalgic "what-might-have-been" way that we remember the Transputer, and our smartphones would either still be brick-sized to accommodate the battery needed for an x86 chip that had no competition, or be Z80-based.

        My RPC is still in daily use (it's 21 this year), mostly as a mail server and emailing machine (there is quite a lot to be said for a mail client that doesn't "do" rich text and HTML) but also because I still haven't found a decent replacement for Impression Publisher on Linux.

        Hwyl!

        M.

        1. Wilseus

          Re: The difference

          I still haven't found a decent replacement for Impression Publisher on Linux.

          Or !Draw for that matter.

          1. Martin an gof Silver badge

            Re: The difference

            I still haven't found a decent replacement for Impression Publisher on Linux.

            Or !Draw for that matter.

            Of course, were I running Windows I would be looking at Ovation which also started life on RiscOS. As for Draw, apart from the price, Xara Designer Pro X is absolutely stunning and I use it a lot at work. Version "X" has gained a lot of WP/DTP-like features. Xara began life as Artworks on RiscOS from Computer Concepts - the people that wrote Impression - and the company (after a flirtation with Corel and a buy-out from Magix) is still working from Gaddesden Place.

            http://www.xara.com/uk/designer-pro/

            And the thing still reads Draw files, though not always perfectly :-/

            Unfortunately the native Linux version of Xara is no more (AFAICT). I am toying with the idea of trying to run it under WINE, an experiment I might attempt at work, but I'm not going to shell out for it at home unless I can prove it works near perfectly.

            M.

            1. Dave Lawton
              Happy

              Re: The difference

              A few things you may not know about :-

              http://www.armini.co.uk/iMX6doc.pdf

              http://www.riscository.com/2015/armx6-formally-announced/#more-3548

              http://www.riscository.com/2014/show-report-london-2014/ Richard Keefe - Impression-X

              http://www.mw-software.com/ ArtWorks 2.X2

              http://www.davidpilling.net/ovationpro/opr.html

          2. Joe Burmeister

            Re: The difference

            Inkscape!

            !Draw -> ArtWorks -> Xara Xtreme -> Inkscape

            Yeah, !Draw and ArtWorks didn't share code, but ArtWorks was a natural evolution to a !Draw user.

            And Inkscape code isn't related to Xara, but the UI is heavily inspired by it.

            You might find Inkscape quickly becomes home, filling the whole left by !Draw. I did. :-)

            Joe

            1. Martin an gof Silver badge

              Re: The difference

              I have Inkscape installed on both my OpenSuse boxes and a Windows 7 box and I'm not hugely impressed. I have to say I prefer the way it works to that of LibreOffice Draw, but I have found it to be somewhat unstable and not a little sluggish in use. Xara (I started with Extreme 6 and now use Designer Pro X10) "just works" most of the time, though only under Windows of course. I still can't get used to the traditional "windows within a window" approach of non Risc-OS applications though. Terribly wasteful of screen real-estate, particularly as I have (at work) three variously-sized screens, and it reminds me of Windows 3.1's "Program Manager".

              M.

      2. Uffish

        Re: The Tech Success of Apple and ARM

        It depends on what you mean by tech success. Both companie , to my mind, are enormously successful at designing and selling tech. One makes more profit. One is more useful.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The difference

      ARM owes its existence to Apple Acorn and vlsi

      From wiki

      The company was founded in November 1990 as Advanced RISC Machines Ltd and structured as a joint venture between Acorn Computers, Apple Computer (now Apple Inc.) and VLSI Technology.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: The difference

        Although Acorn had invented the ARM processor by that point and was shipping machines based on it.

        I had one, 8Mhz of ARM2 single core goodness - a whole 5MIPs

  6. John 156

    ARM is obviously determined to keep Intel out of the mobile market, much more so than trying to compete directly in Intel's traditional PC makets; at some point, ARM will decide it has the edge even there, and then they would make a concerted move with specific designs for these markets.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      If you are a data center power is your main cost.

      For every watt you put into the HW you need 2-3 Watts of AC to get it out again.

      You are running Xeons to pull data of a drive and send it to a network port - why exactly ?

      1. Pascal

        "If you are a data center power is your main cost.

        For every watt you put into the HW you need 2-3 Watts of AC to get it out again."

        Power is your main cost yes, but the numbers for modern data centers are nowhere as bad as that. PUEs in the 3-4 range are either small-scale in-house affairs or very old data centers.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well the new SIMD instruction set contains everything except the kitchen sink. Which is a big waste of silicon. But large companies have the resources to work around bad decisions they make.

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