Tag - PowerVR
Apple may be getting close to boosting its internal chip design efforts, as it is allegedly in talks to acquire the company behind the GPU technology its System-on-Chip employs. A report claims Apple is in "advanced talks" with Imagination Technologies, a British chip design firm known for producing the architecture for the PowerVR line, a GPU used in Apple's mobile SoCs since the A4 initially introduced with the iPad in 2010.
The A8X chip in the iPad Air 2 uses a semi-custom graphics component, a new report illustrates. Apple has typically used off-the-shelf GPUs from PowerVR creators Imagination Technologies in the past. In the case of the A8X, though, Apple has combined a pair of Imagination's quad-core GX6450s.
An analysis of the claims of Apple and leaked benchmarks with regards to the graphics performance and technologies in the new A8 chip that powers the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus indicates that Apple has likely moved to a new PowerVR GPU. The most likely candidate is the six-core PowerVR Series6XT GX6650 made by Imagination. Apple is also likely using a revised version of the Cyclone architecture, first used in the A7, to manage graphics processing.
Imagination Technologies is planning to buy MIPS Technologies in a deal costing $60 million in cash, says Anandtech. MIPS produces one of the few standard CPU architectures outside of Intel and ARM; in buying the company, Imagination will get 82 related patents. Another 580 patents and patent applications have been sold for $350 million to Bridge Crossing, a CPU patent holding group with partners like Intel, ARM, HP, and IBM.
A rumor from an uncommon source has an AT&T version of the Galaxy Nexus close. A tipster leaked stock units to Andro Rev that pointed to full-size, likely LTE-capable SIM cards intended for the phone, implying that the phone itself might support the faster data. Most if not all of AT&T's LTE-capable devices to date, including the just-shipping Lumia 900 and the new iPad, are using micro-SIMs.
Well-known for its pre-release Apple access, Vietnam's Tinhte in a pair of posts has gotten early access to the third-generation iPad and answered some of its core questions. Apart from proving that the box will be very familiar, the site confirmed that the new iPad has an LTE toggle to save power. Most Android devices often won't allow this without a third-party app or hack.
Imagination Technologies outlined some plans for its far and near futures after Electronista stopped by its Mobile World Congress booth on Monday. The PowerVR developer showed a demo of a real-time raytracing graphics engine, where an app calculates the paths of individual light beams in a scene, that it expects to reach mobile devices. As shown in a demo running on a Mac, it could use surface properties rather than unchanging textures to generate the chrome effect on a car, even reflecting another car which in turn had a reflection of the sky.
An apparent discovery Sunday has shown what's purported as the iPad 3's mainboard with an unexpected A5X, not A6, processor name. The WeiPhone details don't directly indicate what this would imply, but they imply more of an evolution than a major overhaul. A date code on top suggests it was made in 2011 week 46, or about November 14-20 and the timeframe when iPad 3 production may have started.
Another AMD executive departure has fueled speculation Tuesday. Graphics division CTO Eric Demers is known to be exiting the chip designer as of February 17. Former Apple executive and current primary CTO Mark Papermaster would temporarily take over during his absence.
An incidental rumor floated next to talk of a purported iPad 3 case back has raised the possibility that Apple's expected A6 chip isn't quad-core. Citing unnamed sources, The Verge claimed that it would stay dual-core but have a "significantly more powerful" graphics core. Although not mentioned, it's presumed the clock speed, architecture, or both would be upgraded with the new chip.