Earlier this year we spoke with Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney about why Vulkan API was important to the Galaxy S7. It was a trailblazer, he said, saying that the graphics prowess this device was about to have would be mind-blowing. Today we get to see more about what it means to have the connection Sweeney speaks of. Moving from OpenGL, developed back in the 1980s, to Vulkan API. It’s radical.
“Vulkan provides a much faster connection between computing and graphics,” said Sweeney, “bringing technology that was originally developed for high-end game consoles like PlayStation and XBox to your smartphone.”
This week Samsung released the following demonstration, showing the big leaps in performance the Galaxy S7 had when moving from OpenGL to Vulkan API. First you’ll find Need for Speed NO LIMITS, a game that makes the difference very plain. Also included in this demo is the game Vainglory and HIT (aka Heroes of Incredible Tales).
At the Samsung Developer Conference 2016, Samsung showed how they’re working on a new launcher that works with Vulkan API to move quicker – far quicker than the device works right now. With this system-level Vulkan support, the device will look and feel a lot smoother.
This is just the beginning. Vulkan API is an industry standard that’ll be coming to all Android smartphones – or most of them, unless they completely lose their minds and stick with OpenGL for the rest of time. As such, you can expect far quicker communication between graphics and computing in the devices you purchase over the next several years – this is a leap, not just a nudge.
Also note – you won’t have to do anything to make this implementation of graphics magic happen. It’s the manufacturer’s job to bring this Vulkan API action to your device – you’ll have it ready to roll right out the box. Updates will come to devices of all sorts, too – NVIDIA’s already on that train.