Samsung announces quad-core chip for Galaxy phone
Electronics heavyweight Samsung will put quad-core silicon in its next Galaxy smartphone, upping the ante for mobile performance.
The Exynos 4 Quad integrates four processor cores, and is built on the company's cutting-edge 32-nanometer manufacturing process. The chip will run at speeds above 1.4GHz, the company said in a statement today.
As a yardstick, the third-generation iPad uses older, 45-nanometer Samsung manufacturing tech, and its central processing unit is dual core (although the graphics processing unit is quad core). And most multi-core smartphones and tablets on the market today are dual core.
Samsung's new chip — targeted at both tablets and smartphones — will land initially in the next Galaxy smartphone. "Already in production, the Exynos 4 Quad is scheduled to be adopted first into Samsung's next Galaxy smartphone that will officially be announced in May," Samsung said in a statement.
"The ... processor is a crucial element in providing our customers with a PC-like experience on mobile devices. Samsung's next Galaxy device, which will be officially announced soon, offers uncompromised performance and ground-breaking multitasking features."
That next Galaxy phone will likely be the Galaxy S III.
Other Exynos 4 Quad highlights that presage Galaxy S III features:
It uses an HD 30fps video hardware codec engine for 1080p video recording and playback; also, it includes an embedded image signal processor interface for a high-quality camera and an HDMI 1.4 interface.
Owing to its 32-nanometer tech, the Exynos 4 Quad has "two times the processing capability over the 45-[nanometer] process-based Exynos 4 Dual, while consuming 20 per cent less power," Samsung said.
Ready to plug in to new phones
Exynos 4 Quad is "pin-to-pin compatible" with the Exynos 4 Dual, allowing smartphone and tablet suppliers to adopt the new solution without additional engineering or design efforts.
Based on ARM Cortex A9 design
It's based on the current Cortex A9 tech from ARM. The latest and greatest ARM tech is called Cortex A15, but those chips won't emerge as commercial products for a while yet.