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  • dagamer34 - Wednesday, April 25, 2012 - link

    Samsung has said in the past that they will have the Exynos 5250 in production this quarter, so when do you expect products with that chip to ship? Q3? Q4? Reply
  • aegisofrime - Wednesday, April 25, 2012 - link

    If this is what is going into the Galaxy S3 it's downright disappointing. I was hoping for dual-core A15s with the Mali-T648. Oh well :/

    Still, at 32nm HKMG it should be more power efficient than the Tegra 3.
  • MeSh1 - Wednesday, April 25, 2012 - link

    Im with you dude. I wanted A15 5212/Mali-T604. I knew that was wishful thinking considering A15 got a late jump 1Q and I had a strong feeling that it wouldnt make it to the SIII. Im sure the phone will be amazing, just not the guts I was hoping for. Isnt the new RAZR HD gonna have next gen Sanpdragon (Krait)? This will be interesting. Reply
  • retrospooty - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    " I wanted A15 5212/Mali-T604. I knew that was wishful thinking considering A15 got a late jump 1Q and I had a strong feeling that it wouldnt make it to the SIII. Im sure the phone will be amazing"

    Ya, but the 28nm SOC's just arent ready yet, not in any mass production scale. It was use this or wait... They chose not to wait. I am 100% sure they will have new phones releasing when 28nm chips come out. This way consumers can make the choice to wait or buy.
  • MrSpadge - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Anything you want to do at 28 nm can be done at 32 nm as well. It's just going to cost a little more (assuming similar yields). Reply
  • shompa - Monday, April 30, 2012 - link

    *hint* smaller manufacturing technique is not cheaper. Yes: You can fit more die candidates on a wafer, but the wafer prices are raised each node shrink. That is why the bulk of semi conductors use 3+ old nodes. Much cheaper at 65nm then 28. Reply
  • ilkhan - Saturday, May 05, 2012 - link

    You do know that Krait, which has been shipping to customers for a while now, is 28nm, right? Samsung is falling behind at this point. Not using A15 in the SGSIII is an expected disappointment. Reply
  • dagamer34 - Sunday, May 06, 2012 - link

    Looking at both HTC One X reviews, I don't think there is any clear winner in performance. Battery life perhaps, but that can always be solved with a larger battery. Reply
  • B3an - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Yeah i was also hoping for dual-core A15, it would have been faster for the vast majority of things. But quad-core is good marketing to all the idiots that don't actually know anything about this stuff.

    I just hope the screen is atleast 720p and Super AMOLED+ (non-pentile), and that the GPU is a powerful mofo to help make up for this.
  • IntelUser2000 - Friday, April 27, 2012 - link

    It's not that they got delayed or anything, you merely fell for marketing. The Cortex A9 devices claimed the same thing, that CPU was ready more than a year before release of first Cortex A9 devices.

    It goes like this in order:
    -A15 architecture standard finalized by ARM
    -A15 architecture gets first licensees
    -In production by xx vendor
    -In production for phones
    -Ready for sale

    Read this article:

    Back in November, Samsung announced its next generation Exynos 5250 SoC based on ARM’s Cortex-A15 architecture = Translation: Samsung has silicon in fabs

    Samsung confirmed today during its earnings call that the Exynos 5250 has begun sampling and should hit mass production in Q2 2012 = Translation: Samsung will have them sent to phone vendor for implementation

    Add additional 6 months or so and vendors will implement them, because they need to acquire adequate supply, figure out how to make everything work together. Add few months more to reach customers, and do finishing touches.

    That's true for everyone, Tegra 2 phones became available for purchase 3-4 months after announcement. Intel's Medfield phone was announced by Lenovo in CES 2012, first phones just arrived now, in-line with 3-4 months delay between announcement and customer availability.
  • phoenix_rizzen - Friday, April 27, 2012 - link

    And, besides, you'd want to wait for the A7 cores to be finalised and shipping in 2+1 or 4+1 big.LITTLE setups (2 or 4 A15 cores with 1 A7 core). That's when the fun will really begin. :)

    2+1 for phones, 4+1 for tablets, and never merrier shall we be. :D
  • apinkel - Wednesday, April 25, 2012 - link

    Glad it's finally a been announced. All the speculation of an exynos 5 (and the 1080p screen) for the GSIII was getting a bit out of hand.

    I'm curious how this will do from a battery life and performance standpoint as compared to the snapdragon S4 and tegra 3. I'm looking pretty hard at an S4 based phone but I am interesting in seeing how the 4412 does.
  • ilkhan - Wednesday, April 25, 2012 - link

    Slightly disappointed, but I'll still be getting one just to have a more powerful phone in the meantime until an A15 phone pops up. Possibly the next Nexus? Who knows.
    A15+T604+Big.Little would make for an amazing SoC.
  • Zink - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Over on Engadget everyone is going on about 4 cores crushing the competition but I was really hopping this would be an renouncement for all of the above being in production and coming out in a few months. I don't see how this will provide more than an incremental update to the user experience performance wise. The screen might be better but for browsing and apps I can't see a pin compatible processor with some extra cores really being noticeable over the GSII. Reply
  • teiglin - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Yeah, the extra two cores provide so little benefit for phone applications it's silly. Looks like I'll be getting a One XL when they're available instead of waiting for this--at least the S4 cores are a bit faster than the A9s and manufactured on a comparable process.

    It is unsurprising if you put it into an Intel-like "tock" context--this is just a tock with a smaller process, more cores, and slightly higher clock speeds, and we'll have to wait another year for a tick in the GS4, with A15s and mali6xx.
  • Reikon - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Actually this would be more like Intel's tick. Tock is for major architecture changes. Tick is for process node changes. Reply
  • TheHappyStick - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    I believe that this would count as a "tick" actually but it does seem that most ARM SoCs are moving to a similar tick-tock release schedule. Reply
  • richworks - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    It was back in November that Samsung officially announced that the Exynos 5 series are being shipped to consumers... Why haven't Samsung decided to use the A15 cpus? What's holding them back from releasing the SGS 3 with 5250? I am genuinely curious to know why... Reply
  • Aenean144 - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    They are not ready. Q4 2012 is likely the earliest for mass production for a couple of reasons. Cortex-A15 SoCs likely require mature 32/28 nm nodes for shipping mass quantities of them. TAANSTAFL. Higher performance requires more power. To get an A15 SoC into a phone platform, it'll need lower voltage, lower power circuitry. A more mature node can do that better in mass quantities. As of today, nobody has a mature 28/32 nm node except for Intel.

    Secondly, semiconductor vendors are notoriously optimistic for when they can ship things. Samsung shipped prototype parts to hardware vendors, not consumers. It'll take awhile before a prototype chip is turned into a working platform containing radio chips, power management chips, I/O chips, etc. 6 months to do that is ridiculous optimistic. Try 1 year.
  • Mosea - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    I will be very interested how it performs compared to Qualcomm MSM8960 processor with Adreno 225 GPU in HTC One XL. I think the best Anrdoid phone will be a competition between these two. Reply
  • phoenix_rizzen - Friday, April 27, 2012 - link

    From the benchmark comparisons with Tegra3, it'll probably be something like:
    - Krait better at low-thread-count CPU-intensive tasks
    - Exynos better at high-thread-count CPU-intensive tasks
    - Exynos better at GPU-intensive tasks
    - Krait better at saving battery power

    Where it will really get interesting is when the S4Pro ships (Krait CPU cores plus Adreno 3xx GPU). As that is when you'll really see the power of the Qualcomm SoCs.

    (Or, so the theory goes.)
  • 1ceTr0n - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    You complain about the newest phone having a quad core CPU in comparison to dual core which won't perform as well in comparison to quad core phones once ICS is fully implemented in most phones.

    Please go back to iPhone.
  • Impulses - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Four slower cores vs two significantly faster cores... Would you rather have a C2Q or a dually i3/i5? Reply
  • cosminmcm - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    A C2Q, definitely. Reply
  • Exodite - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    I'd say that's a poor call.

    To use Anandtech's own bench...

    And that's with the 9550 vs. the 2100, where the latter realistically should be a 2125 or 2130 today.
  • snoozemode - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    What are you doing with your phone that won't run good on the SGS3? Playing a home-made ported Mass Effect 3? Reply
  • SydneyBlue120d - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    So we need to start a petition to Google to use the 5250 in the Google Phone 2012 version? It is rumored Samsung will be another time the partner, so we can hope in 5250:
  • Zink - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    They always do new phones with the new Android. I seems possible that Android 5 and A15 CPUs could be ready for Q3. Reply
  • SilentSin - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Stupid marketing gimmicks..Give me two faster cores over 4 slow cores eating up die and power real estate any day. I'm not running crysis on my phone. On the video, watch the power consumption part closely at the bottom: the comparison is between *dual* 45nm vs. *dual* 32nm and the savings aren't all that great mW-wise (don't fall for the old % trick). I can only imagine what it would look like with all four cores going balls out. Another year of phones with shite battery life. Color me unimpressed. Reply
  • S20802 - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Didn't you read this bit...
    "power gating on all four A9s, in addition to per core frequency and voltage scaling"
    A power gated core is as good as no core when no threads are scheduled on it and the under used core will be downclocked and undervolted.
  • SilentSin - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    So what does that say about the power profiles when the phone is actually in use or you're using it to play games? How intelligent is the power gating? All they are showing is that the worst case scenario for a quad core is far worse than the worst case for a dual and the return on that for the end user on a phone is going to be very small. If 2 of the cores are power gated 99% of the time wtf was the purpose of including them in the first place? Use the space for a better GPU. Reply
  • UpSpin - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    If an app only needs 1 core, only 1 core will be active. If an app only needs two cores, only two cores will be active and the SoC will consume as much as a dual core, if an app needs 3 or 4 cores, 3 or 4 cores will be active and the app will run significantly faster than on a dual core, but therefore consume more power than the dual core, still probably the same as the SGSII which is build on 45nm. I really don't see your problem. Reply
  • SilentSin - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    I just think it's a complete waste and winds up holding the overall performance back for the vast majority of use cases. 2 or 1 core usage will happen much more frequently. Speaking hypothetically: Max speed of a dual core is 2GHz , max speed on 2 of 4 cores on a quad is 1.5GHz . Who wins on the most common usages? Unless the 4412 profiles are using some form of "turbo" and the running cores at the same frequency as a dual core would be at this is fairly useless imo. The fact that the A15 chips will go back to using a dual core architecture should say something..Faster individual cores, better GPU, or higher memory throughput would be a better use of die space and power. Reply
  • S20802 - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    It will finally boil down to how well the operating system manages processor core affinity. If an app needs 100% of one core then it could get scheduled exclusively on one core instead of sharing it with other apps with a single core processor. In case of dual core the chances of a single app getting 100% improves but not as much as in a quad. Then there is multithreading. But most apps are hopelessly multithreaded unfortunately. Reply
  • Conficio - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    If an app only needs 1 core ==should be==> If all apps running only need 1 core

    If an app only needs two core ==should be==> If all apps running only need two cores

    The problem becomes that apps running in background and the app running in parallel with the OS, etc. will eat up your battery and you don't really know who is at fault.

    I'd love to see the OS schedule the core count intelligently. When powered, like in the car, or on my desk, run more cores then when on battery and give me an extended battery option that I can switch, because I know I'll be going on a hike or travel and power will not be easy to come by.
  • NeoteriX - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Your general premise I agree with, but you're still an idiot. :)

    It's not a marketing "gimmick," it's the best Samsung could do under the circumstances. Everyone wishes that instead of quad A9 cores, this would be an A15 device but they are not ready. NO ONE has put out an A15 cortex based into production yet and the delays are just evidence of the immense challenges in designing new architecture and the fabrication process.

    Keep in mind that only Qualcomm licenses the ARM instruction set and has any personal say in terms of releasing next generation architecture (which it has with the S4); everyone else, TI, nVidia, Freescale, Apple, and Samsung licenses the processor design, so they are at the mercy of that process as well.

    Faced with the need to introduce a second generation processor without second generation architecture, they are forced to either increase clock speeds or increase cores. We're already hitting the points of diminishing returns in terms of clock speeds on the A9 architecture, and so the most power efficient way of introducing noticeably stronger performance is by switching up to quad core.

    Now you're right that many Android processes are lightly threaded, reducing the gains that quad core brings to the table, particularly against an A15 or S4. So yes, faster core architecture in less cores is more ideal. However, it's not a marketing scam, and there certainly are not the battery life concerns you raise -- thanks to aggressive power gating and asynch clocks.
  • SilentSin - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Maybe I'm taking the wrong approach then. What excites you about having a quad core? What would you be able to do with a quad that you can't on a dual?

    You say my preference towards dual core is silly and this is how technology works but provide no real argument for the quad. They went with quad simply because that was their only option to increase performance? BS

    I don't understand how you can't think this is just Samsung blowing smoke up your arse if you don't get any practical use out of the extra two cores. It's just an arms race (no pun intended) and the winners will be salesmen, nobody else will notice a difference.

    I'd be more excited if they had announced an improved A9 dual core with integrated LTE and MailT658 that uses less power than a 4210 but I guess that's just me? My biggest complaint with current phones isn't lack of multi threading. It's battery life with LTE and graphics performance. Seems easy enough to fix really.

    Why can't the consumers ever seem to get a combo of SoC/form factor/display/battery/carrier that is ideal? With all the phones out there this shouldn't be that hard. Ever since the Droid 1 I've been hard pressed to find a phone that really has it all.
  • NeoteriX - Monday, April 30, 2012 - link

    The point is,

    1) Current real-world tests show that in its current state, practical use of mobile phones does not utilize four cores to their maximum potential, thus, I would agree with you that I would rather see a next-gen dual-core SoC (like the S4 or A15) over a quad core A9.

    However, you're being silly because, yes we would all like to see "XYZ" and in this case, it's an "improved" dual core, but there is a huge gap between the infinite limits of our imaginations and what is a practical reality. What is "easy enough to fix" for you, doesn't reflect reality.

    Here, the reality is that there is not much more to be extracted out of the A9 in terms of power or efficiency. ...Why would Samsung release a next-generation phone with a processor that is only 10% faster and saves 5% more battery over the last iteration? The A15 is late and the only way to deliver a "next-gen" experience is to go quad-core.
  • SilentSin - Wednesday, May 02, 2012 - link

    Dual A9 + better GPU + integrated LTE is a very practical reality, it is not something I just dreamed up. In fact that should be on every phone ARM SoC maker's roadmap because it would/will be their highest volume parts until A15 becomes more mature.

    You're last paragraph is really my point, "Why?" Samsung's own benchmarks showed a "40% power reduction" in dual core chips 45nm vs 32. That would come in very handy in a time where LTE phones go through batteries like candy.

    If they are somehow satisfied with current battery life then they could use that 40% headroom for a more powerful GPU or faster clocks on the CPU/RAM/memory controller. All of those would improve our end user experience in a much more detectable way than slapping on two more cores just so they can get invited to the quad core fiesta. That's like putting a NO system on a civic so you can gloat to people about having a sweet 1/4 mile time. You're still stuck driving a crap civic through the streets where you do 99% of your driving.

    Anyway the latest rumor/trend of Verizon releasing weird one-off versions of phones might come into play here. Speculation is that the US Verizon edition will be a dual core S4 which I would be very happy with.
  • tipoo - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Like many other comments here I'm a bit let down that it's just Cortex A9 cores, as Qualcomm with the S4 proved hugely more powerful cores are possible at the same or lower power draw. However, I am curious to see if it will be more powerful than Nvidias Tegra 3, seeing as many people think that is limited by the single channel memory controller. Also, the Mali in the last Exynos is still among the fastest Android graphics chips, so I'm excited to see what they brought to the table this time. And 32nm should also help it over the Tegra 3 and get it at least competitive with Kraits power draw. Reply
  • snoozemode - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Tegra 3 supports DDR3-L up to 1500 MHz so I don't think the single-channel is much of a bottleneck. Reply
  • r4ir4org - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    Actually this would be more like Intel's tick. Tock is for major architecture changes. Tick is for process node changes.
  • krumme - Thursday, April 26, 2012 - link

    I was hoping for A7, but a powergated samsung process 32hkmg A9 is fine, even though it will be running under 20% most of the time i use it. Thankfully i didnt get the A15 with some mali xxxx, as i dont use my phone for drawing fractals or playing crysis.

    You cant have it all, so i preordered mine.

    Heck, i would buy it, no matter what is inside, as long as it doesnt carry the Apple label - haha
  • tipoo - Friday, April 27, 2012 - link

    Is it the same Mali 400, or something new? Reply

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