processors

The big deal about IBM’s tiny chips

The big deal about IBM’s tiny chips

IBM is making a big deal of celebrating a tiny achievement, successfully producing a 7nm chip that could mean huge efficiency improvements in phones, laptops and more. Squeezing more than 20 billion transistors into a chip the size of a fingernail took figuring out new manufacturing processes and chewed through part of a $3bn investment IBM earmarked back in 2014, but it's shaping up to be worth every cent. Big Blue predicts a power/performance increase of more than 50-percent from the smaller processors.

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Intel acquires Altera in $17bn IoT gadget play

Intel acquires Altera in $17bn IoT gadget play

Computer processor maker Intel acquires fellow chip-maker Altera in effort to combine technologies and lead the market through the future. Suggesting that this combination "harnesses the power of Moore's Law to accelerate Altera's existing businesses," Intel has announced that they'll acquire the company for $16.7 billion in an all-cash transaction. This combination will allow the companies to "make the next generation of solutions not just better," said Brian Krzanich, CEO of Intel, "but able to do more." This is the dawn of something greater and far more customizable than past products with either company on their own.

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Exynos M1 could house Samsung’s custom CPU cores

Exynos M1 could house Samsung’s custom CPU cores

Samsung seems to be really intent in growing more and more independent even when it comes to its internal components. After ditching Qualcomm's Snapdragon for its own Exynos chip, the Korean OEM is apparently now preparing a new Exynos called the M1. What's special about this Exynos M1 isn't simply the fact that it's the next generation Application Processor (AP) for Samsung's devices. It's because chip could very well be the first to carry Samsung's own CPU core design instead of simply licensing it from ARM Holdings.

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Qualcomm steps up efforts to help Chinese OEMs go global

Qualcomm steps up efforts to help Chinese OEMs go global

Qualcomm, one of the biggest chip makers in the mobile industry, is facing quite some challenges on multiple fronts. It practically admitted taking a hit from Samsung's decision not to go with its chips for the highly popular Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 edge flagships. It also explicitly mentioned incurring no small amount of loss in settling an antitrust case in China. But despite the latter, Qualcomm is even more intent in wooing the large market, this time by establishing ties with Chinese smartphone makers to help them launch their products abroad.

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Qualcomm tipped to be eying Samsung fabs for next chips

Qualcomm tipped to be eying Samsung fabs for next chips

In the tech industry, the term "frenemies" isn't entirely new. Companies that lambast each other in public usually have quieter, friendly deals in some corners. Despite the almost toxic rivalry between Apple and Samsung, the Korean manufacturer has been, at several points in time, a supplier of components for Cupertino's devices. And now, despite the perceived tension between Qualcomm and Samsung, the San Diego, California chip maker is now rumored to be looking at Samsung's foundries for making its next high-end chip, the Snapdragon 820.

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Samsung’s profit slide saved by chip, display business

Samsung’s profit slide saved by chip, display business

Samsung just released its financial performance for the first quarter of the year and, good news for Sammy and its fans, it has beat the rather negative analyst expectations. But it might be too soon to rejoice. While the Korean consumer electronics giant did seemingly beat the odds, it's smartphone business, believed to be the culprit for Samsung's decline, isn't looking any better. Instead, the company has its chips and LCD displays to thank for greeting 2015 with more of a bang instead of a flop.

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Intel charges at mobile again with new Atom x3, x5, x7 chips

Intel charges at mobile again with new Atom x3, x5, x7 chips

You have to hand it to Intel. It just doesn't let go of a dream. Despite not being able to make a big enough dent in the smartphone market, it is still soldiering on, revising its strategy again and again. While many of us thought (or hoped) that the chip maker would just focus on wearables, it's taking another stab at smartphones, phablets, and tablets. This time with a new line of mobile chips under the names of the Atom x3, Atom x5, and Atom x7.

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MediaTek catching up with Snapdragon 810 in benchmarks

MediaTek catching up with Snapdragon 810 in benchmarks

Qualcomm's latest flagship chip, the Snapdragon 810, is already under a lot of pressure for certain issues, warranted or not. It could probably do with less problems but it seems that rival MediaTek won't let it catch a break. The latter's upcoming chip, a certain MT6795, is now said to be on par with the Snapdragon 810. That is, at least based on leaked benchmark scores. Whether that will be enough to catapult MediaTek to the forefront of the mobile chips race is another question entirely.

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Qualcomm unveils Snapdragon 620, 618, 425, and 415

Qualcomm unveils Snapdragon 620, 618, 425, and 415

This week the folks at Qualcomm have introduced a number of new processors for high volume tiers of smartphones. They've started off with two families: Snapdragon 600 and Snapdragon 400. From there, you'll find units like the Snapdragon 620 and the Snapdragon 618 coming out, ready to "redefine the 600 tier with significantly higher levels of performance with integrated 64-bit ARM Cortex A-72 CPUs and new X8 LTE modems." There's also a new octa-core CPU for the 400 tier - so its looking like even the "lowest end" of the smartphone universe is coming up powerful!

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LG to take on 64-bit Samsung Exynos, Qualcomm Snapdragon

LG to take on 64-bit Samsung Exynos, Qualcomm Snapdragon

There is very little doubt that 2015 will see the shift to 64-bit architecture on mobile processors, especially with Qualcomm making available such chips that straddle all device tiers. Major mobile chip makers are already making the transition, but there seems to be one very small and new player who wants to catch up. LG is now reported to still be eying a spot in the mobile AP (application processor) market with its own 64-bit octa-core chip to rival Qualcomm and, of course, Samsung.

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