Octo-Core Samsung Galaxy S4: Is It Overboard?

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When it comes to desktop PCs the more cores it has the better the computer. However now it appears that makers of smartphones are including more cores in their products. The Samsung Galaxy S3 and the LG Nexus 4 both have four cores and there is a rumour now that the Samsung Galaxy S4 will be an octo-core (2 sets of quad-core chips). So where will it stop and how many cores are too many?

Samsung Galaxy S4 octo-core rumors

MediaTek, who are based in Taiwan, happes to be one of the biggest companies in the world in regards to the manufacturing of processors. At the moment they are said to be working on a processor of 8 cores which is the MT6599 chip that will be could on a ZTE device in the second half of 2013. At the moment one of their popular processors is the Cortex A9, which is the one that has been used on many Android devices. However the 8 core processor will ensure that they could keep up with the demand of phone makers who are after the next “big thing”.

Samsung are said to also be working on an 8 core chip and it is thought that the company will tell of their findings at a conference early next year. They are working on two clusters of quad core processors, one said to be high performance which is based on the Cortex A15 and the other is lower and has been based on Cortex A7. It has the name of ARM bigLittle architecture and this is what they may use on the Samsung Galaxy S4 next year.

If the cores can be turned off when they are not needed, the big.Little setup as it is called will make sure that the multi-cores are able to improve device performance without being too much of a drain on the battery. But how many cores do handsets really need and what’s more, will the software be able to take advantage of them?

The iPad 4 comes with the A6X processor and this is one of the most powerful out there right now. It is a dual cores. Intel is shipping out single cores and on Windows Phone 8 they are still sticking with dual cores.

However people thought the same way about dual cores last year and wondered if they were needed on mobile phones when single core devices like the iPhone performed so well. Today the majority of high end devices use the Snapdragon S4 Pro processor and the Exynos processor along with the Tegra. All of these are quad core processors and they beat the dual core devices in benchmark tests. So naturally an octo-core Samsung Galaxy S4 would nuke rivals on benchmarks and give Samsung some real bragging rights behind it. After all, isn’t this what Android smartphones have been doing this year when it comes to hardware?

Mike is the man who reviews gadgets that aren’t mainstream or products that can’t exactly be classified as consumer electronics e.g. portable talking toilets. It’s always interesting to read about the crazy products we have here in Asia that just don’t get as much publicity as they warrant.