ARM designed the chip technology that is used in almost every smartphone existing today (ARM develops chip designs for chip makers like Qualcomm and MediaTek). Just recently, the British chip design company introduced two new processors, the Cortex-A72 processor and the Mali-T880 graphics chip, that should make tomorrow's smartphones faster, more powerful, and more energy-efficient.
Smartphones are already powerful as they are today. But the Cortex-A73 processor and the Mali-T880 promise to make our handsets capable of doing even more things. In the near future, it will be commonplace for people to do tasks they normally do using laptops on their smartphones. Of course, that is ARM's overall goal: to eliminate the gap between smartphones and personal computers.
Moreover, ARM believes that the two new processors they just unveiled will make future smartphones even more energy-efficient. In a few years, we may be expecting phone makers to produce slimmer smartphones that not only last longer but also have better computing capabilities despite their thin dimensions.
Of course, we are not there yet. Smartphones are more popular than ever before, with more people using them than ever in history. But they have not been able to supplant desktop computers and laptops yet. Some tasks, like extensive word processing, graphic design, video editing, or music production, just to name a few, are still done mostly on desktop computers and laptops.
But smartphones are not to be underestimated. Handsets with bigger display screens are already poised to surpass tablets in terms of usage. And these large-screened smartphones are getting better and better at displaying and handling extensive graphics.
Of course, the quality of the smartphone's processors is the key. And ARM knows this all too well. Its Cortex-A72 processor is designed to offer 50 times more performance than most of today's processors. Also, it allows 75 percent lower energy consumption. Several of ARM's partners, like MediaTek, Rockchip, and HiSilicon, already have licenses to use ARM's new processor technology.
As for the Mali-T880 graphics chip, it also promises better performance and power efficiency. This chip could help developers bring graphics-extensive PC games and gaming console games into smartphones.
ARM is offering its two new processors in various performance levels with corresponding prices. Moreover, ARM purposely design its new processors for 16-nanometer chips, a more-advanced type of manufacturing process that allows processor makers to produce smaller but more powerful chips.
ARM is expecting that smartphones will begin adapting its newest chip technology in 2016, but it will not be surprised that before the end of 2015, a few handsets will already feature the new processors.
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