Great performance is a good thing, but less time on the power cord is a better thing
64-bit processing is nothing to sneeze at, but it's also nothing new. The first 3Com PDAs used 64-bit processors. Every Intel Atom processor is 64-bit. I think Casio built an old watch with a 64-bit processor in it as well. It means nothing by itself, and the reason Apple's new Samsung-built A7 performs so well is because it was designed to deliver a particular experience to particular software. There's more to it than the number of bits.
While we're not going to dismiss the benefits of moving hardware and operating systems to 64-bit support, there's something much more important said to be part of Samsung's new Exynos design — a 14nm process.
To put it in simple terms, this refers to the way the processor wafers are built, and it's a measurement of space between components. When you move down to 14nm (nanometers) you do a couple very important things. You decrease the cost, and up the power efficiency. Advanced discussion of FinFET, MOFSET and MuGFET advancements are best left to the forums if you're into that.
When you have a
minute hour to spare, ask Phil how he loves his Haswell (22nm) laptop. The 22nm process gives it awesome battery life compared to previous versions. Intel loves to crow about the Haswell, with good reason. They also offer a great example of the benefit of a 14nm process, with tests of their upcoming Broadwell chips being 30 percent more power efficient under the same load.
TSMC has released a roadmap showing they are on-board, but Samsung can meet the demand. If these rumors turn out to be true, and Samsung delivers a 64-bit, HMP-ready 14nm Exynos processor, we may get the performance to power ratio we've been waiting for in our mobile devices.
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