Processor

Qualcomm’s flagship Snapdragon just got snappier

Qualcomm’s flagship Snapdragon just got snappier

The processor arms-race slows for nobody, and Qualcomm is already pitching its upgrade to the chip found in many of the flagship 2016 Android smartphones. The Snapdragon 821 is, as the name suggests, a freshened version of the Snapdragon 820, which Qualcomm says offers a 10-percent performance increase for device manufacturers who simply must have the speediest silicon.

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This Tetris runs on a giant home-built “megaprocessor” computer

This Tetris runs on a giant home-built “megaprocessor” computer

Creating a Tetris game to be played on the side of a Seattle skyscraper is undoubtedly a huge undertaking, but that's relatively easy for a company with resources and ready-made components at its disposal. On the other hand, creating a Tetris game to be played on a computer built from scratch to resemble a blown up microprocessor probably takes the cake. It's also insanely hard too. But that's exactly what James Newman from Cambridge has accomplished. Both creating what he calls a "megaprocessor" and using it for what it does best: playing Tetris.

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Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 does the Tango, future 600, 800 too

Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 does the Tango, future 600, 800 too

When Lenovo unveiled the first consumer Tango-enabled smartphone, the PHAB2 Pro, it was somewhat curious that the OEM went with a Snapdragon 625 instead of the highest end 820. Although we'll probably never really find out why, Qualcomm reveals that it has, in fact, made specific tweaks to make the SD652 work perfectly with Tango. Now it has done the same for the Snapdragon 820, its current flagship, and promises it will also be the case for future generations of the 600 and 800 chip series, opening the doors for more devices to dance their way to augmented reality as well.

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1,000-core “kilo-core” processor built at UC Davis

1,000-core “kilo-core” processor built at UC Davis

When MediaTek announced its deca-core moble processor, it almost seemed insane in a world that's very much settled on octa-cores. The chip maker, however, has nothing on the silicon produced by researchers at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of California, Davis. Although it definitely won't fit inside a smartphone, tablet, or even a laptop for that matter, the chip boasts of being the world's first kilo-core processor. That's 1,000 processing cores at your service, making even the beefiest gaming rig cry in shame.

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Qualcomm outs Snapdragon Wear 1100 for target-purpose wearables

Qualcomm outs Snapdragon Wear 1100 for target-purpose wearables

When smartwatches arrived on the scene almost two years ago, there were still no components specially designed to the still unheard of device. That meant manufacturers had to make do retrofitting smartphone pieces for smartwatches, which practically meant using unoptimized hardware. February this year, Qualcomm unveiled the Snapdragon Wear 2100 to offer a system-on-chip solution more suited for smartwatches and similar multi-purpose devices. Now at Computex 2016, it is following that up with the Snapdragon Wear 1100 which targets more special-purpose devices instead.

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New Intel Core i7 Extreme Edition drives 10 cores like crazy

New Intel Core i7 Extreme Edition drives 10 cores like crazy

PCs are the favorite example of analysts, observers, and journalists of a dying breed. Ironcally, developments in the tech sector, even some in mobile, in the past year or so might be bringing the favorable spotlight back on PCs. More sophisticated virtual reality content and multimedia creation necessarily require more processing power than even the most powerful Android or iOS device can provide. Answering that call, Intel is revealing at Computex 2016 its most extreme Extreme Edition to date. The Intel Core i7 Extreme Edition boasts of 10 cores toiling away together to deliver the computing power needed for those immersive experiences.

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NXP’s BlueBox promises off-the-shelf autonomous cars

NXP’s BlueBox promises off-the-shelf autonomous cars

An off-the-shelf autonomous car brain could accelerate self-driving vehicles onto the roads, with NXP pitching its open-source based BlueBox to automakers. The platform - which consists not only of the AI smarts for the car but its "nervous system" of sensors and communication - could be used to quickly develop a Level 4 autonomous vehicle, the company claims.

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Intel kills Atom, smartphone, tablet future in limbo

Intel kills Atom, smartphone, tablet future in limbo

Has Intel finally thrown in the towel in the smartphone market? It seem so. As part of the company's comprehensive reforms, which also saw 11% of its worforce get pink slips, Intel has revealed the immediate cancellation of two of its current and still coming products: the SoFIA platform and the next gen Broxton chips. While those names might not ring too many bells, these basically means that Intel has effectively killed off the future of its Atom processors, putting into question the very future of its smartphone and, more importantly, low-cost tablet dreams.

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Xiaomi tipped to get into mobile processors with “Rifle”

Xiaomi tipped to get into mobile processors with “Rifle”

Xiaomi has made it no secret that it wants to diversify its products. In fact, it has been putting out products in the smart home market, including a recent smart induction rice cooker. It latest new product, however, will take it back to the mobile tech market but in another light. According to an official from one of Xiaomi's component partners, the Chinese OEM is going to reveal its own Application Processing Unit or APU to power its mobile devices, and it will be doing so as early as next month.

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Intel Apollo Lake CPUs promised to bring cheaper, thinner hybrids

Intel Apollo Lake CPUs promised to bring cheaper, thinner hybrids

In same areas, the PC landscape hasn't changed one bit. But in a relatively smaller corner, a new breed of computing devices are growing in number. Sometimes called 2-in-1 laptops, tablet/laptop hybrids, convertibles, and even detachables, this sub-category is being poised by some analysts to help mitigate the decline of the PC market. And Intel naturally wants its processors to power that next wave. At its annual IDF, it announced Apollo Lake, the platform for its next gen Atom processors that it envisions will make such devices more powerful while also bringing down not just costs but also sizes.

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NXP QorIQ LS1012A 64-bit ARM processor is smaller than a thumbtack

NXP QorIQ LS1012A 64-bit ARM processor is smaller than a thumbtack

NXP Semiconductors has rolled out the QorIQ LS1012A processor promising enterprise-class performance and security for consumer and networking applications in a very small package size. The chip has a 64-bit ARM v8 processor with network packet acceleration and QorIQ trust architecture security capability and line-rate networking performance at 1W of power. The chip packs all its features into a tiny 9.6mm x 9.6mm package size.

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Lady Gaga’s David Bowie tribute: behind the scenes with Intel x Grammys

Lady Gaga’s David Bowie tribute: behind the scenes with Intel x Grammys

Lady Gaga has teamed with the minds at Intel to create a spectacular performance during the 2016 Grammy Awards, all in tribute to the late great David Bowie. Inside this performance you'll see not only 9 movements, Space Oddity to Heroes, but a multisensory experience the likes of which only Gaga has aimed for before. Intel technology is leveraged to create visuals for the performance, ranging from 3D body tracking to projections for mid-performance costume changes.

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