Mobile chip designer ARM on Tuesday unveiled a new chip designed for what the company calls high-growth mobile and embedded applications.
Announced during its annual TechCon developer conference in Santa Clara, the Cortex-A35 is the first in a family of new ultra high efficiency ARMv8-A processors. It uses 10 percent less power than the existing Cortex-A7 while offering a performance boost of between six percent and 40 percent. Compared to the Cortex-A53, the new SoC consumes 33 percent less power per core and occupies 25 percent less silicon space.
The Cortex-A35 won’t be used exclusively in entry-level devices. It’ll also find a home in higher-end handsets alongside more powerful cores in big.LITTLE configurations.
MediaTek’s flagship 10-core Helio X20, for example, is comprised of four Cortex-A53 cores clocked at up to 1.4GHz to handle lightweight tasks, four additional Cortex-A53 cores running at up to 2.0GHz to help balance workloads and two Cortex-A72 cores at 2.5GHz for demanding tasks. Adding some A35 cores to the mix could really boost the X20’s potential.
While it may be hard for some to get excited about a low-power core, it’s the international entry-level smartphone industry that’s on the cusp of incredible growth. ARM said it hopes the chip will be responsible for getting a smartphone in the hands of the next billion people that don’t yet have one.
Devices utilizing the new chip are expected to ship by late 2016.