2014 promises to be an exciting year for the Internet-of-Things as the tech giant ARM architecture unveils new designs which they hope will help them keep their chips more than an arm’s length ahead of their Intel competition. The current trend for mobile technology such as smartphones and tablets is to use super-low power processing but also keep a focus on connectivity. While Intel has struggled to keep up in the mobile market, ARM has led the pack and no doubt wants to keep it that way. Currently, ARM’s 32-bit Cortex M technology has already granted them an edge as multiple manufacturers have already received licensing rights and implemented the technology into touchscreen sensors and other products.
It’s largely thanks to ARM architecture’s Cortex-A processor series that has allowed system-on-chip (SoC) manufacturers such as MediaTek, Nvidia, Qualcomm and Samsung to take the lead in chip designs for mobile platforms. The series which has ranged from the old Cortex A9 to the current higher-end Cortex A15 will soon be upgraded to the new Cortex A53 CPU, which has been prepped and primed for the dawn of 64-bit mobile processing. The new chip should perform on a similar scale as the Cortex A9 did, which means ARM architectures Cortex A15 won’t be disappearing anywhere just yet. The good news for mobile users is that a low power chip will result in longer lasting batteries for their devices.
Meanwhile, ARM Architecture’s processor is keeping an arm’s length ahead of Intel; sometimes it seems without even trying. It was a slightly awkward performance at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) earlier this month when CEO Brian Krzanich unveiled new demo products, which weren’t powered by their own chips. Brian Calder, a spokesperson for Intel admitted that their devices did have “third-party parts” inside and later, a headset called “Jarvis,” which is always-on identified Intel’s products as having ARM chip designs within its interior. Intel did have some interesting new demo gadgets to show off such as a wireless device charger and shrugged off the fact that they were using ARM chips to power them.
As 2014 rolls in, it is still unknown which version of Android will be able to support ARM’s new 64-bit Cortex A53 and A57 chip designs. It is doubtful whether Android 4.4, the current and most recent KitKat version will be able to support them but perhaps Android 5.0 will be able to take full advantage of the new SoC. Speaking of SoC, this video from Android Authority may help answer a lot of other questions, especially after CES.
By Jonathan Holowka