Linley on Mobile: June 15, 2016

 weSRCH's Best of the Internet Award

Linley on Mobile
Volume 9, Issue 8
June 15, 2016

Independent Analysis of Semiconductors for Mobile and Wireless
Editor: Mike Demler
Contributors: Mike Demler, Linley Gwennap, David Kanter

In This Issue:

- Cortex-A73 Improves Mobile Efficiency
- Mali-G71 Enables Coherent Computing
- Leia 3D Aims to Change User Interface

To read these articles on-line, click here:

Linley Mobile & Wearables Conference 2016
July 26 - 27, 2016

Hyatt Regency Hotel, Santa Clara, CA

Mobile Chip and System Designers, This Conference is For You!

This two-day, single-track conference features technical presentations addressing design issues for smartphones, tablets, smartwatches and other wearable devices. The Linley Group will also present an overview of the market, technologies, equipment-design, and silicon trends for designers of mobile devices.

This event is the only one of its kind focused on next-generation mobile platform design.

Register Today!

Don't miss this opportunity to learn from these experts:

Keynote Day One:
Mobile Market Evolution
Linley Gwennap, President and Principal Analyst, The Linley Group

Keynote Day Two:
Jim Morrison, VP of Competitive Technical Intelligence, Chipworks a TechInsights Company

MIPI Camera, Display, and Sensor Interfaces for Multimedia Applications
Hezi Saar, Staff Product Marketing Manager, Synopsys

Dude, Where's My Radio?
Ron Lowman, Strategic Marketing Manager, Synopsys

The Right Processor for Wearables Devices
Fawad Khad, Business Development, MediaTek

The Right Connectivity for Wearable Devices
Cliff Lin, Director, MediaTek

Leading the Industry with Gigabit-class LTE and 5G
Peter Carson, Sr. Director, Marketing, Qualcomm

Smart Wearables: Unleashing The Next Era of Wearables Innovation
Pankaj Kedia, Sr. Director, Product Management, Qualcomm

Right Sizing Mobile and Wearable Security
Barry Seidner, VP Americas, InsideSecure

Multi-Purpose, Low-Power DSPs for Mobile and Other Markets
David Heine, Sr. Design Engineering Architect, Cadence

An Efficient QoS-Aware Coherent Architecture for Mobile SoCs
Joseph Rowlands, Chief Architect, NetSpeed Systems

Scalable LTE IPs: From Wearables to LTE-Advanced-Pro and 5G
Emmanuel Gresset, Director of Business Development, CEVA

Heterogeneous Cache Coherency Using Highly Configurable and Scalable Interconnect IP
David Kruckemyr, Chief Hardware Architect, Arteris

Enabling a Multi-Sensory World
Behrooz Abdi, President and CEO, InvenSense

Elevating Devices, Networks, and Data Centers to New Heights
Sanjay Charagulla, Sr. Director, Segment Marketing, GLOBALFOUNDRIES

This conference is for designers of mobile chips, mobile devices, and mobile software as well as for service providers, the press, and the financial community. Attendance is free to qualified registrants.

For more information and to register, please visit our website:

Cortex-A73 Improves Mobile Efficiency
By David Kanter

The new Cortex-A73 logically follows Cortex-A72, but for this update, ARM’s focus is on power and sustainable performance instead of big benchmark gains. In the same process technology, the A73 reduces power by 20% and die area by 25% compared with the A72, according to the company. In a thermally constrained environment such as a smartphone, the lower power translates into greater performance over a long period. For less constrained systems, such as embedded products, the A72 will achieve better performance, albeit while using more power.

For the last several years, ARM has aimed its highest-performance CPU cores at both high-end mobile devices as well as embedded and server processors. For example, Cortex-A72 serves as a big core in HiSilicon’s Kirin 950 smartphone processor and in NXP’s LS20xx family for networking equipment. For the older Cortex-A15 and Cortex-A57, this dual purpose yielded a design that was overpowered for mobile devices. Many SoCs containing these high-end cores used throttling to stay within the form factor’s power and thermal limits. These constraints have increased as phones have become thinner even while delivering more CPU performance.

Optimized for smartphones, Cortex-A73 (code-named Artemis) reduces power while offering similar performance as the A72. It was designed by ARM’s French (Sophia-Antipolis) team, which previously worked on Cortex-A17. Unsurprisingly, the A73 looks much like an ARMv8 version of the A17. It’s a two-wide out-of-order processor with an 11-stage integer pipeline, and it’s more similar to the A17 than to the three-wide 15-stage A72. Consistent with its mobile emphasis, the A73 omits enterprise features like ECC for caches and employs the older Amba 4 for connectivity.

Mobile Chip Report subscribers can access the full article:

Mali-G71 Enables Coherent Computing
By Mike Demler

ARM’s Mali-G71 extends the Norse lineage of its predecessors—Midgard and Utgard—by using the new Bifrost architecture to launch its attack on the realm of high-performance GPUs. The G71 (previously code-named Mimir) implements an extensively redesigned microarchitecture that supports full hardware cache-coherent operation for tightly coupled CPU/GPU workloads. It also adds TrustZone support, ensuring content protection throughout the media-processing pipeline.

With its new Bifrost design, the company aims to gain more share in the high-end graphics segment and to address the requirements of performance-intensive tasks such as mobile gaming, augmented reality (AR), and virtual reality (VR). To enable these applications, the Mali-G71 GPU can scale from 4 to as many as 32 shader cores—twice the maximum number in the current Mali performance leader, the T860/880. It’s also a more efficient design, requiring 20% less power and 40% less die area than the T880 under the same process and performance conditions.

Smartphone power budgets are likely to restrict G71-equipped processors to 16 shader cores, but tablets could use the maximum configuration. Mali is also popular in digital TVs, where ARM estimates it has approximately a 75% market share. The G71 can drive UltraHD displays, which require 120Hz screen-refresh rates at 4K resolution. It also supports the OpenCL 2.0 API for heterogeneous CPU/GPU computing, as well the Khronos Group’s OpenGL ES 3.x and new Vulkan 3D-graphics API.

Mobile Chip Report subscribers can access the full article:

Leia 3D Aims to Change User Interface
By Linley Gwennap

Hoping to rekindle interest in 3D, a startup called Leia offers a new display technology that delivers a 3D effect across a broad range of viewing conditions. Boosted by the availability of high-resolution screens, the technology offers HD-quality 3D images. It adds almost no weight or thickness to the phone and is relatively inexpensive to manufacture. The company has already signed a deal with Altice, a European operator, to bring the first phones using the Leia display to market by the end of next year.

The technology provides 3D imagery by beaming different views to each eye. Unlike in movie theaters, no glasses are required; instead, the display uses a diffraction grating to aim light in different directions. The Leia display creates 32 views that radiate across 60 degrees. This approach allows viewing at a variety of distances and angles; multiple users can even look at the same display and see the 3D effect from different perspectives. The images have a perceived depth of a few centimeters.

If broadly adopted, this technology could enable new types of user interfaces. Although 3D games are the obvious first application, smartphone operating systems could display messages or contacts in a 3D format, making it easier to find the right one. Going a step further, “hover” technology could allow users to manipulate 3D objects that appear above the screen, possibly even with haptic feedback that makes the object feel solid. For example, the display could create a virtual joystick or button that the user could grab and manipulate by touch. UI designers could have a field day with this technology.

Mobile Chip Report subscribers can access the full article:

Copyright 2016, The Linley Group

Domain: Electronics
Category: Mobile

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