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iPad's Apple A4 CPU is feature-stripped ARM Cortex-A8 - report - Page 3

post #81 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

PA Risc?

PA Semi.

PA RISC is HP's RISC processor family.

Secondly, you don't invest $1 Billion in R&D on legacy ARM CPUs.

Oops! Sorry. Yeah. I knew that. Reflexive trying.

It's not likely Apple spent anywhere near $1 billion to work on this chip. But they did spend $275 million to buy PA Semi, which was not unreasonable.
post #82 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by shubidua View Post

Well, I have no access to the SDK, but I believe that they found an temporary solution by writing iPhone OS 3.2 for the iPad, because they will add a lot of new features in iOS 4 (which will probably be rebranded to cover both iPad and iPhone OS), which could handle the difference between the two devices correctly.

If they wanted an OS of its own for the iPad, my guess is they would already have announced it, but I might be wrong about this.

[edit]
To sum it up, I think they had some timing issues between iOS 4.0 and the iPad, and the current situation is only a temporary solution. It's like the multitasking stuff: it seems weird that the iPad is limited like the iPhone, because it has clearly more screen real estate and horse power, and a different purpose. (I'm not sure that this last sentence really make sense ...)
[/edit]

I agree with all that. The event seems unrehearsed and sloppy. They are clearly not trying to reveal any aspects to v4.0 before its time. I also wouldn't be surprised if they eventually do a spit and create an iPad OS or rename the streamlined version of OS X to something more universal, like Mobile OS X or OS X Mobile, especially if other products come along like a new ARM-based AppleTV or Home Server.
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post #83 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

It's odd that they call them both iPhone OS because they are significantly different. Not just the UI but core technologies that make it very unique. That is why iPad apps can't run on the iPhone/Touch and why you can't use iPhone OS 3.2 SDK to make iPhone or Touch apps. They really are quit different in spite of the nomenclature.

I don't think they're that different from what I've been reading. The main difference in the resolution of the devices. The GUI seems to be about the same, which surprised me. I thought Apple would have made more concessions given the much larger screen size. And that's more than the resolution difference. The size alone makes a big (heh heh, unintended pun) difference in the way it will be handled.

A bunch of what we're seeing in the 3.2 OS looks as though it could be used in the iP/T as well.
post #84 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

Oops! Sorry. Yeah. I knew that. Reflexive trying.

It's not likely Apple spent anywhere near $1 billion to work on this chip. But they did spend $275 million to buy PA Semi, which was not unreasonable.

Jobs is quoted as saying the company has invested > $1 Billion on R&D for the A4.

Whether or not that includes $275 Million means anywhere from $725 Million+ in R&D plus ARM IP licensing on a CPU/GPU IC solution for old IP makes no sense.
post #85 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

I agree with all that. The event seems unrehearsed and sloppy. They are clearly not trying to reveal any aspects to v4.0 before its time. I also wouldn't be surprised if they eventually do a spit and create an iPad OS or rename the streamlined version of OS X to something more universal, like Mobile OS X or OS X Mobile, especially if other products come along like a new ARM-based AppleTV or Home Server.

Oh, I don't think they would want to do that.
post #86 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

I don't think they're that different from what I've been reading. The main difference in the resolution of the devices. The GUI seems to be about the same, which surprised me. I thought Apple would have made more concessions given the much larger screen size. And that's more than the resolution difference. The size alone makes a big (heh heh, unintended pun) difference in the way it will be handled.

A bunch of what we're seeing in the 3.2 OS looks as though it could be used in the iP/T as well.

There is a lot changed. Even the GUI, it's not just the resolution but how much is being displayed. If it was just the resolution then they'd have devs just make apps work with the higher resolution (and ratio), but they didn't, they have a UI that is idealized for a 9.7" display with a 4:3 ratio. The base elements look similar to the iPhone/Touch UI as it effective and familiar, but they use a dual column format in most views which the iPhone and Touch's OS is not capable of. They also add popover menus which give plenty of options that once weren't feasible. There are deeper changes too, which are partly responsible why SDK 3.2 was not able to compile for the iPhone or Touch.


Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

Oh, I don't think they would want to do that.

Which part? Renaming it, again, or creating non-mobile ARM-based products?
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post #87 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

The main difference in the resolution of the devices. The GUI seems to be about the same, which surprised me.

I agree with that. The home screen of the iPad looks kind of bizarre right now, so I would not be surprised to a major UI overhaul in the next iteration of iOS. They need to change the SpringBoard, because with all these apps it looks like it is becoming inefficient. I mean, when they first introduced the iPhone, you barely had any applications, so I guess they never designed springboard to have hundreds of apps.
It is like the PNS, with the only difference that they became aware of the shortcomings before it was released.
"Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute, and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute. THAT'S relativity." - Albert Einstein
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"Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute, and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute. THAT'S relativity." - Albert Einstein
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post #88 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

Jobs is quoted as saying the company has invested > $1 Billion on R&D for the A4.

Whether or not that includes $275 Million means anywhere from $725 Million+ in R&D plus ARM IP licensing on a CPU/GPU IC solution for old IP makes no sense.

I don't believe it. It's just not possible. I'd like to see an explanation for that statement, which I don't remember seeing, though I'm not saying he didn't make it. But he would have to b referring to much more than work on the chip itself.
post #89 of 166
[QUOTE=solipsism;1581788]There is a lot changed. Even the GUI, it's not just the resolution but how much is being displayed. If it was just the resolution then they'd have devs just make apps work with the higher resolution (and ratio), but they didn't, they have a UI that is idealized for a 9.7" display with a 4:3 ratio. The base elements look similar to the iPhone/Touch UI as it effective and familiar, but they use a dual column format in most views which the iPhone and Touch's OS is not capable of. They also add popover menus which give plenty of options that once weren't feasible. There are deeper changes too, which are partly responsible why SDK 3.2 was not able to compile for the iPhone or Touch.

What I see in the GUI, and what I read, shows that the home screen looks almost exactly like the original, without a couple of the programs on the front. Even the number of program icons is the same. They are having developers work on apps that are the same except for the resolution.

There are additional features in 3.2 to be sure, but can you show that none will be used in the iP/T? I don't think so. Most of what you're talking about has to do with what I mentioned. higher resolution, and a larger screen.

Quote:
Which part? Renaming it, again, or creating non-mobile ARM-based products?

Bifurcating the OS's. While the iPad Version will be an upgrade, because of size and therefore additional features, they will remain the same otherwise. That's why Apple will give a Universal (I thought we'd never see that word again) wrapper for programs.

But, what if the A+ upgrade to the iP/T that Jobs was supposed to have mentioned includes an 800 x 480 screen? Then a bunch of stuff that works on the iPad may also work on those as well, even thought the screen is so small.
post #90 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post

Perhaps it's just a number too big for my brain to comprehend, but a billion dollars to essentially rejigger existing chips seems excessive.

Now that Apple owns PA Semi, they can claim that all the money PA Semi has ever spent developing the A4/A8/A9/everything else they did that preceded this chip was spent by Apple. I really don't think they've spent $1 billion on this chip alone since they bought PA Semi, but I'm sure from the inception of Arm until now, $1 billion has been spent developing products...

Kind of like how Apple can claim being responsible for Logic, even though eMagic conceived and developed basically the platform, and Apple basically just bought and rebranded them and financed eMagic's continuing work (and forced it OSX exclusive and designed the shipping box).

See also Avid buying Protools and Sibelius, Microsoft buying DOS, Adobe buying Macromedia, etc. etc.

It would be ridiculous for Apple to give any credit to eMagic, PA Semi, Randy Ubillos/Keygrip or anybody else for products they've rebranded - they bought the company and therefore that company's history is Apple's to rebrand and manipulate.

Heck, Apple's actual contribution since buying ARM could be less than a million thus far (besides costs of buying the company) if the chip is basically just a slightly altered A8, which was maybe already in prototype before the sale in 2008...

...Then Apple would just need to tweak it a bit, slap on a logo, and voila! A4! Then they'll stick in in the iPad and let the early adopters troubleshoot and test it just like they did with S***Leopard, Aperture 3, iMac 27, AirPort extreme, Time Capsule, MacBook pro batteries, MacBook hard drives, etc. etc.
post #91 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by shubidua View Post

I agree with that. The home screen of the iPad looks kind of bizarre right now, so I would not be surprised to a major UI overhaul in the next iteration of iOS. They need to change the SpringBoard, because with all these apps it looks like it is becoming inefficient. I mean, when they first introduced the iPhone, you barely had any applications, so I guess they never designed springboard to have hundreds of apps.
It is like the PNS, with the only difference that they became aware of the shortcomings before it was released.

I don't know whether you or I first used the name "iOS" But I like it, even though it would get ripped if Apple used it.

I just don't see the iPad using the iPhone OS, and even the Touch seems silly using it. If Apple is going to move this to other product lines, then that name has gotta go!

I was even thinking of trademarking it!
post #92 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

What we have here, if this aticle is correct, is an OS and software that can operate amazingly well on this hardware, and that says something important.

Sure. But an A9 design is more future proof. The 1st gen iPhone is not da snappy and it really isn't THAT old. As more features are added to the iPhone OS the more headroom the better.

Given that competitors are going to be running A9 based solutions this year it's hard to justify getting an A8 device. It's like paying top dollar for a Core2Duo laptop today. Nobody is jumping up and down to do that and we're all waiting for the Core i3/i5/i7 MBPs.

Personally, if it contains an reference A8 design I'll likely skip the 1st gen. In a year's time A9 solutions will make pretty much any 1Ghz A8 solution look anemic.

Besides, there's no indication that Stokes' sources are any different from the VentureBeats' sources...a former Apple engineer who supposedly heard it from someone still inside.

Me, I dunno why you'd pair PA Semi's power saving tech with the A8 when the A9 is 40-45nm vs 65nm and ARM claims it's more power efficient out of the box. So at best you're trading away a good part of your competitive advantage to someone like the Tegra 250 (40 nm process).

Until we see some hard info I still believe A9 design. Possibye single core so it actually clocks at 1 Ghz as opposed to "up to 1Ghz dual core but we clock it at 600Mhz for battery and heat reasons".
post #93 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by str1f3 View Post

LOL, so you think there is going to be true multitasking when:

-the iPad will be running the same OS as the iPhone so there will be no significant differences between the two devices

-the iPad has to power a higher res display

-the iPad will introduce more powerful apps that will be more resource intensive

If that was your argument then you are making a lousy one. The 3GS is a meaningless argument. There will not be a situation where the iPhone will have multitasking and the iPad won't. Chances are it will 've some kind of gimped, widget based where certain kinds of apps can be run in the background without the full UI being launched.

BTW, don't go off immediately saying that I don't what's inside the chip when the first two words I posted were "if true".

Not even sure what you're trying to say. The current generation of iPhone and iPad hardware and software are more than capable of running 2 third party apps simultaneously, it is just not a feature. Enter jailbreak. It becomes capable through a simple and rudimentary customization.

Something Apple could enable, but won't. Instead, they will build it in using a different methodology and future hardware. I believe the Apple A4 will be the first to do it, and it has nothing to do with it being dual core or not.

Dual core iPads/iPhones when/if they appear are as relevant to "multi tasking" as they are to the type of "single tasking" the iPhone OS does.
post #94 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

We likely will not get that info, as it's a trade secret if the companies want to handle it that way. But once it's here, people will put it through its paces and determine what's going on inside.

You should be able to tell from the app builds. Both gcc and RVCT has A9 compile switches. Looking at the resulting assembly will likely tell you if the -mcpu=cortex-a8 or -mcpu=cortex-a9 was used by XCode.

No reason for Apple to be that secretive once the product actually launches.
post #95 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

Sure. But an A9 design is more future proof. The 1st gen iPhone is not da snappy and it really isn't THAT old. As more features are added to the iPhone OS the more headroom the better.

Given that competitors are going to be running A9 based solutions this year it's hard to justify getting an A8 device. It's like paying top dollar for a Core2Duo laptop today. Nobody is jumping up and down to do that and we're all waiting for the Core i3/i5/i7 MBPs.

Personally, if it contains an reference A8 design I'll likely skip the 1st gen. In a year's time A9 solutions will make pretty much any 1Ghz A8 solution look anemic.

Besides, there's no indication that Stokes' sources are any different from the VentureBeats' sources...a former Apple engineer who supposedly heard it from someone still inside.

Me, I dunno why you'd pair PA Semi's power saving tech with the A8 when the A9 is 40-45nm vs 65nm and ARM claims it's more power efficient out of the box. So at best you're trading away a good part of your competitive advantage to someone like the Tegra 250 (40 nm process).

Until we see some hard info I still believe A9 design. Possibye single core so it actually clocks at 1 Ghz as opposed to "up to 1Ghz dual core but we clock it at 600Mhz for battery and heat reasons".

I'm not saying I prefer the older chip. I'm saying that with this performing as well as it does on the chip, it will perform much better on a faster two core version next year. Hey, I'm as entranced by the new stuff as anyone else here. But I'd rather see Apple make their stuff less dependent on faster hardware. Then the faster hardware will allow for better software than otherwise.

Until we know more about this, we can't say much.
post #96 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

You should be able to tell from the app builds. Both gcc and RVCT has A9 compile switches. Looking at the resulting assembly will likely tell you if the -mcpu=cortex-a8 or -mcpu=cortex-a9 was used by XCode.

No reason for Apple to be that secretive once the product actually launches.

I'm not a developer, so I don't see that information, and I imagine that most will keep the info to themselves. So far thy have. After it's out, we'll learn more.
post #97 of 166
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post #98 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by aaarrrgggh View Post

Why do they think the A4 would strip out camera functionality? Would Apple really design a chip just for the iPad 1.0 with anticipated sales numbers somewhere south of 12MM units? I would think that they need to sell at least 40MM A4 processors to recoup any investment they made in the design, if the $1B number is accurate within an order of magnitude. It might make sense if they just invested $100MM, but then it is still an expensive exercise.

What unit of measure does your acronym MM stand for?
post #99 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by cnocbui View Post

What unit of measure does your acronym MM stand for?

Mega Million?
post #100 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blastdoor View Post

Techno-geeks focus on the inputs, the rest of the world focuses on the outputs. By making the A4 a mysterious black box, Apple avoids all of the noise from geekdom and focuses people's attention on the overall product.

I think the Wii analogy is perfect. Geeks refuse to buy it because they think the hardware is obsolete. The rest of the world buys it because it's fun.

Wii is also being purchased because it is/was cheaper than others, as well. I also came across statistics that WII owners on average purchase much less games than X360 and PS3 owners, making them more casual gamers, or novelty-purchasers... so WII is good news for hardware manufacturer, but not so good news for content providers, sort of.
post #101 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by nikon133 View Post

Wii is also being purchased because it is/was cheaper than others, as well. I also came across statistics that WII owners on average purchase much less games than X360 and PS3 owners, making them more casual gamers, or novelty-purchasers... so WII is good news for hardware manufacturer, but not so good news for content providers, sort of.

I just looked here:

http://www.vgchartz.com/chartsindex.php

and it seems to me that the Wii is well represented among the top selling games. Of course, many of those top-selling Wii games are from Nintendo, so maybe your point applies to 3rd party games.
post #102 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Woohoo! View Post

The iPad has a lower barrier to entry than the $999 MacBook, also the accessories are optional. The iPad is going to replace the MacBook.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Woohoo! View Post

The iPad has a lower barrier to entry than the $2499 Mac Pro, also the accessories are optional. The iPad is going to replace the Mac Pro.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Woohoo! View Post

The iPad has a lower barrier to entry than the $2999 Xserve, also the accessories are optional. The iPad is going to replace the Xserve.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Woohoo! View Post

The iPad has a lower barrier to entry than the $999 Final Cut Studio suite, also the accessories are optional. The iPad is going to replace Final Cut.

Makes about as much sense.
post #103 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

Jon Stokes is well respected. What he says makes sense. Sometimes the articles here are a bit overblown, but the technical articles in Ars are also well respected. He's also saying that it looks as though it's true, but he's not saying it's 100% yet. I would tend to go with what he says unless shown differently.

He knows microprocessor design, yes, but I question his "Apple" sources. He's great with x86 designs and has a good history with good contacts there, but all things related Apple, he's just as much in the dark as the next guy. He's only as good as his sources are, and they are not that good in things involving Apple. Nobody has good sources except maybe John Gruber, but his are all in the marketing department.

Whether the Apple A4 is a Cortex A8 or A9 or a custom ARM design, who knows, I'm pretty sure that it and any subsequent Apple ARM SoC won't have higher performance than competing ARM designs. There's no magic circuit design that PA Semi has that others don't.

But Stokes pokes on the right thing. The number one complaint about iPhones is battery life. So, I think Apple is putting a lot of effort into getting the best performance/Watt as possible. If it yields a true 30 day standby time for the iPad and 10 hours of video/WiFi browsing, maybe 12 hours for ebook reading, and doing a custom SoC is the reason, that's a big big win. If that development work means a 10 hour WiFi/talk time and 3 week standby time for the next iPhone, that's a big win.

I do think he is wrong on the things being removed like the camera and the various I/O, but he's just guessing on all that stuff or just using them as an example. What I think is right on is the power/clock gating and voltage slewing. If the A4 can downclock and reduce voltage to the bare minimum for iBook reading, that could mean 14-16 hrs of battery life for reading. That's probably something other SoCs can't do.
post #104 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shrike View Post

He knows microprocessor design, yes, but I question his "Apple" sources. He's great with x86 designs and has a good history with good contacts there, but all things related Apple, he's just as much in the dark as the next guy. He's only as good as his sources are, and they are not that good in things involving Apple. Nobody has good sources except maybe John Gruber, but his are all in the marketing department.

Whether the Apple A4 is a Cortex A8 or A9 or a custom ARM design, who knows, I'm pretty sure that it and any subsequent Apple ARM SoC will have higher performance than computing ARM designs. There's no magic circuit design that PA Semi has that others don't.

But Stokes pokes on the right thing. The number one complaint about iPhones is battery life. So, I think Apple is putting a lot of effort into getting the best performance/Watt as possible. If it yields a true 30 day standby time for the iPad and 10 hours of video/WiFi browsing, maybe 12 hours for ebook reading, and doing a custom SoC is the reason, that's a big big win. If that development work means a 10 hour WiFi/talk time and 3 week standby time for the next iPhone, that's a big win.

I do think he is wrong on the things being removed like the camera and the various I/O, but he's just guessing on all that stuff or just using them as an example. What I think is right on is the power/clock gating and voltage slewing. If the A4 can downclock and reduce voltage to the bare minimum for iBook reading, that could mean 14-16 hrs of battery life for reading. That's probably something other SoCs can't do.

Jon has been using and writing about Apple matters for years. In fact, many of the people working at Ars are Mac users. Ars is more conservative than AI is with their technical articles, and much more technical as well. If he says that he has sources, then I believe him, going from his record. I'd be surprised if he was far off.

He might be wrong about the camera, but don't forget that we really don't know if that frame we saw a picture of was really what it was stated as being. Possibly, the iPad frame has no place for a camera. Remember the frame for the 3GS which turned out to be for a Creative device?

I agree about the battery life, and was thinking about the same numbers myself. I believe that Jobs said 10 hours for movies, if I'm not mistaken. If so, that's about the most intensive usage the hardware will be getting other than some 3D gaming. 140 hours of music without the screen on! I'd like to see any other tablet match that.
post #105 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmmx View Post

Re #1:
I am not convinced. It does not make sense to me that Apple would go to all the effort of producing its own chip for so little gain. In the end, these are still only rumors.

Additionally, we have the few limited reports that system is really fast and responsive. Mossberg, for example, said "wicked fast." This indicates that there is a lot more going on than what the Ars Tech. article proclaims.

Personally, I see no reason to doubt the quote in #2.

You can get "wicked fast" from well executed software even if hardware is not overly exciting.

PC desktop platform is "blessed" with affordable and powerful software and, more often than not, it gives programmers excuse for sloppy, minimally optimised coding.

I cannot skip reflecting on PS2 with it's puny 4MB video RAM and 32MB system RAM, 300MHz CPU speed and 147MHz GPU speed... yet some games are looking good and run remarkably smooth even comparing to desktop standards... on a hardware that would not be considered useful at all on desktops.

Likewise, even PS3 is, hardware wise, way behind desktops with its graphics based on 256MB nVidia 7800. New PC games would really be bag of hurt on that graphics, and 256MB of system memory simply would be useless, even if you have it all available for games/applications... yet new PS3 games look really great, even compared with PC latest and greatest.
post #106 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by str1f3 View Post

If true, I hope the A4 does not make it into the next iPhone. With the iPad potentially running a year old processor, I guess the prospects of multitasking in OS 4.0 is looking pretty dim.

And yet the CoreDuo processors were all based on the Pentium III not the Pentium IV which was the newer one.

New isn't always better.
post #107 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by ulfoaf View Post

You don't have to be multicore to multitask! it just helps. Unix has been multitasking on a single processor for 40 years.

Doesn't even have to be fast. The Amiga screamed along running 16 apps in 1MB RAM on a 7MHz processor. That was graphics apps (Personal Paint and Imagine), games, spreadsheets (Filthy Lucre), internet browser (AWeb), e-mail client, and other apps all at the same time.
post #108 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blastdoor View Post

I just looked here:

http://www.vgchartz.com/chartsindex.php

and it seems to me that the Wii is well represented among the top selling games. Of course, many of those top-selling Wii games are from Nintendo, so maybe your point applies to 3rd party games.

Yes, but don't forget you have much more Wiis in houses than other consoles. Relative to number of each console in the wild, there are less Wii games per console owner compared to other platforms.
post #109 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by lowededwookie View Post

And yet the CoreDuo processors were all based on the Pentium III not the Pentium IV which was the newer one.

New isn't always better.

I believe they were based on the mobile version.

Who knew at the time that it would have such legs?
post #110 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by knightlie View Post

Nonsense. MacBook models are not delineated by age in any way.



Nonsense. Why would they do that? Why would they close off an entire revenue stream?



Nonsense. See first point above. Where do you even get that idea from, apart from pulling it out of your a**?



Nonsense. It's a media delivery device, and that's what it does. Why would anyone outside of the idiot jailbreaking community want to hack it?



Nonsense. How many non-technical users do you think start "messing around" in terminal?



And more nonsense. You're using nonsense to explain nonsense. I would imagine (and my anecdotal theories carry as much weight as yours) iPad users are likely to already HAVE a computer.

By golly but you make a lot of sense, Mr. Knightlie!
post #111 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

Jon has been using and writing about Apple matters for years. In fact, many of the people working at Ars are Mac users. Ars is more conservative than AI is with their technical articles, and much more technical as well. If he says that he has sources, then I believe him, going from his record. I'd be surprised if he was far off.

Yes, there are a lot of Mac users staffed at Ars. It doesn't mean they have any good sources for Apple dealings. Stokes is as just in the dark as anyone else. What he has on his side is good x86 knowledge, industry sources, and a good understanding of microprocessor design. I'm pretty confident he has zero sources into Apple proper. I think the best he's got is a contractor working on compiler and driver design. Maybe it is a developer with iPad access and they have inferred by performance results.

Notice how he is just speculating about what is missing. He's already admitted to being wrong about display output. I think all his sources told him was that the A4 is an Cortex-A8 based SoC. And it's only based on indirect knowledge. That's it. I don't think anyone knows but the upper management, the SoC CPU/SMC subteam, and the compiler/driver subteam.

I think we will never know and all we will have are performance comparisons between iPhone 3GS and iPad apps.

Quote:
I agree about the battery life, and was thinking about the same numbers myself. I believe that Jobs said 10 hours for movies, if I'm not mistaken. If so, that's about the most intensive usage the hardware will be getting other than some 3D gaming. 140 hours of music without the screen on! I'd like to see any other tablet match that.

It's right on the iPad specs page: 10 hrs for video or web browsing at default display settings. The iPad has to really hit that mark.
post #112 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer
Jobs is quoted as saying the company has invested > $1 Billion on R&D for the A4.

Whether or not that includes $275 Million means anywhere from $725 Million+ in R&D plus ARM IP licensing on a CPU/GPU IC solution for old IP makes no sense.

I don't believe it. It's just not possible. I'd like to see an explanation for that statement, which I don't remember seeing, though I'm not saying he didn't make it. But he would have to b referring to much more than work on the chip itself.

You're right. It wasn't Jobs and anything attributed to Apple. Nobody knows how much Apple has spent on the A4.

The $1G quote was the NYT quoting an industry analyst on the cost of designing a proprietary, from the ground-up CPU. That's all he was talking about in an article about how Nvidia, Qualcomm and Apple are off building their own custom SoCs. It's quite doubtful it cost any of them that much as they all took various existing designs and did custom integration work.

One can make a guess. It is fairly simple. Take 50 people including managers and engineers, multiply by 200k and by 2 years, you get 20m. Double it for other procurements, testing and pad it a little more for other stuff. It probably cost Apple on the order of 50 million if they devouted 50 engineers and various related testing, prototyping, licensing and "institutional" costs. For $1G, you're talking 500 people over 2 years and some capital expenditures. Apple probably didn't even spend that much on iPad development as whole. They probably didn't even spend half that.
post #113 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by pmz View Post

I think its safe to say that the average 2010 uninformed consumer who has an HDTV and picks up a Wii will be somewhat disappointed when they see the analog resolution

The amount of people today who have HDTV's but no HDTV cable or OTA HD antenna blow your little theory right out of the water. They don't care right now for the primary purpose of their "HD" TV, why are they going to suddenly care for a game console that is a casual, secondary use?

To a geek such as yourself, watching SD on an HDTV is a distraction in and of itself and unfathomable. To non-geeks, the Wii is fun and it's approachable in a way that the Xbox and PS3 aren't. Extra resolution isn't going to change that part of the experience. They couldn't care less that it's 480i instead of 1080p - it's fun!. Wanna know why the Wii is still popular? It's about the end user experience, not the specs!

It is notable that Nintendo, like Apple, is doing just fine dissing people such as yourself who look at a few missing checkboxes and proclaims "it sucks". From the beating self-proclaimed Internet experts took with the iPod, personified in the now infamous Slashdot iPod comments, you think this kind of inane commentary would be a little more reserved. But here we are, all over again...
post #114 of 166
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Originally Posted by Woohoo! View Post

Why is this bad? Because the iPad is a closed device and doesn't encourage as much immediate hacking and interest as a open device does.

On a Mac, anyone who has the interest can fire up Terminal, learn a few Unix commands and be messing around. It encourages that because it's a open device.

People who want to use terminal won't be buying an iPad - they will continue to buy the MacBook or MacBook Pro just as they would today - unless they are stupid, and if you are that stupid you don't have any business in terminal or "hacking" around anyway.

I really don't understand the hysterics that the iPad is going to kill "open" computing. Even if Apple killed Mac OSX outright tomorrow (and there is absolutely no indication whatsoever that they intend to do so either now or at any time in the future) you can still grab and Windows, Linux or whatever OS you want to run on your generic Intel hardware.

So the iPad isn't for you - great. I find it fascinating that people are so threatened by something different that they feel they have to not only not just buy it, but campaign against it Guess what, there are more people who want to do basic tasks but don't want a computer to "hack around" than those who do. That's what Apple is targeting - a market that is not currently being served by "traditional" computing. The majority of people couldn't care less about opening Terminal or learning Unix - and nor should they have to! This isn't "one size fits all world" - you need to get over yourself and realize there is a VERY large group of people where the iPad is ideal.

Heck, as an IT geek who is comfortable hacking around, I still find the concept of an appliance like the iPad that will just work and have dramatically reduced administrative overhead extremely appealing for casual computing. It's not enough to replace my full blown machines, but it can handle the majority of my casual computing - rather than being a hinderance, the "closed" nature of the iPad is a good thing - it makes the entire environment and hence my experience with it far smoother than a Mac, Windows (or god forbid Linux!) machine can ever hope of being. It's not the perfect solution for everything but it doesn't have to be! It wouldn't be nearly as appealing if it was trying to be all things to all people...
post #115 of 166
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Originally Posted by DocNo42 View Post

From the beating self-proclaimed Internet experts took with the iPod, personified in the now infamous Slashdot iPod comments, you think this kind of inane commentary would be a little more reserved. But here we are, all over again...

Great link. Lot of funny posts which remind me of certain myopic posters here.

This one caught my eye...
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Apple is a normal company. Why does the public constantly expect them to do the impossible?

I think over history, Apple has shown with some regularity that they can pull "the impossible" out of their hat. Now with Jobs and NeXT genes on board, that sense is even more intense.

Whether Apple's products are brilliant successes or bizarrely interesting failures, nobody can deny that what they're doing as a rule seems more interesting that what Dell/Gateway/Microsoft et al are ever doing. And occasionally (Macintosh, NeXT, Newton, iMac) Apple/NeXT have done things that were completely mind-blowing and heretofore impossible.

I'm speaking as a longtime PC owner and Linux, not a Mac owner (though I do love my Newton)-- I have a healthy respect for the real innovation Apple has brought to the industry (compare to Microsoft's "innovation"...) and I have trouble understanding why Slashot users are such haters when it comes to Apple and Steve Jobs.

That was in 2001 and they still had that pedigree. Time change but people don't... it seems.
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #116 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by str1f3 View Post

LOL, so you think there is going to be true multitasking when:

-the iPad will be running the same OS as the iPhone so there will be no significant differences between the two devices

1) The iPhone multitasks now. Not sure what this "true" multitasking is you speak of. Is "true" multitasking like Monster-Cable "pure" HDMI?

2)Selective multitasking for third party Apps will probably come eventually - when Apple figures out how to make it clean, obvious and manageable in a way where a non-geek can understand clearly what is going on they will offer it. Until then, like cut/copy/paste it won't be shipping.

About the only thing I want or need multitasking for is Pandora. Police Scanner can play in the background by launching a stream in Safari in the background - that's on the iPhone today! Perhaps it's just a matter of Pandora thinking different? Anyway, "multitasking" isn't a feature that most people are looking for in and of itself. They want to get stuff done - and the current iPhone OS does that and provides a pretty good facsimile of multitasking - I can switch programs and tasks fairly quickly. Well written apps that leverage notification services and preserve state as you exit/enter them work pretty darn well. Just look at anyone with an Android phone that runs many programs at once - the battery life goes to crap. Well, what about that! That can't be - Apple is just being asshole control freaks and their whole line about battery life is just a ploy to run your life.



"Multitasking" didn't affect the iPhone significantly and I sincerely doubt it will make a meaningful impact with the iPad. Sure, some geeks won't buy it - but if it wasn't for multitasking there would be some other deficiency or list of "deficiencies" - in other words, they were never going to nor do they intend to buy an iPhone or iPad anyway, so their protesting is meaningless \
post #117 of 166
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Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Great link. Lot of funny posts which remind me of certain myopic posters here.

I'm surprised they left that article active. Then again it's such a part of the Internet it would probably raise more attention if they took it down

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That was in 2001 and they still had that pedigree. Time change but people don't... it seems.

"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."

It's not just a pithy catch phrase
post #118 of 166
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Originally Posted by Superbass View Post

...Then Apple would just need to tweak it a bit, slap on a logo, and voila! A4! Then they'll stick in in the iPad and let the early adopters troubleshoot and test it just like they did with S***Leopard, Aperture 3, iMac 27, AirPort extreme, Time Capsule, MacBook pro batteries, MacBook hard drives, etc. etc.

Your quite the masochist to stick with a company that causes you so much angst...
post #119 of 166
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Originally Posted by vinea View Post

Personally, if it contains an reference A8 design I'll likely skip the 1st gen. In a year's time A9 solutions will make pretty much any 1Ghz A8 solution look anemic.

This right here is why Apple isn't saying much beyond "A4" for technical specs for the iPad, and I for one am glad for this device they are not hopping on that tredmill. At the end of the day what the ^@!^# difference does it make what the guts are? Does it run the software quickly (and from every demo I saw recorded at the hands on after the announcement that's a resounding yes!)? Does it get good battery life? Does it do everything I want and need it to do?

If yes, I buy. I'm not going to not buy because they could have put a 900MHz part in and instead they put in an 800MHz part... honestly, other than some geek compulsion to focus on minutia, at the end of the day what does it matter? To be honest, if I was going to obsess about a technical detail on the iPad it would be the amount of system memory, not the CPU. Stuff like this sure as heck won't matter to my father. He's shocked me, he's very interested in the iPad and if he gets one, when the next iPad comes out his won't "poof" into the air or otherwise be diminished. If Apple releases a new OS that kills it by loading it down, that would be a fair concern - my iPhone 3G did slow down with later releases more than I would have liked, but then again I'm pretty impatient People like my father probably won't even notice.

If you wan't something you can pick apart, get gaga over the guts, or get root and terminal access go buy one of the many existing solutions that will do all that right now. This device isn't targeted at you!
post #120 of 166
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Originally Posted by Shrike View Post

There's no magic circuit design that PA Semi has that others don't.

Really? So Apple spent over 1 Billion on PA Semi to get functionality that anyone else can have?

Wow, that's a pretty bad investment!

/sarcasm

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But Stokes pokes on the right thing. The number one complaint about iPhones is battery life. So, I think Apple is putting a lot of effort into getting the best performance/Watt as possible.

The chips are important, but if you watch Steve talking with Walt Mossburg right after the unveiling, he comments that the chips use next to nothing and it's screen that consumes the lions share of the power - right about the same time he rightly points out that it's going to be VERY rare for someone to use a device for more than 10 hours at a time thus making recharging an essentially moot issue.

If it yields a true 30 day standby time for the iPad and 10 hours of video/WiFi browsing, maybe 12 hours for ebook reading, and doing a custom SoC is the reason, that's a big big win. If that development work means a 10 hour WiFi/talk time and 3 week standby time for the next iPhone, that's a big win.

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If the A4 can downclock and reduce voltage to the bare minimum for iBook reading, that could mean 14-16 hrs of battery life for reading. That's probably something other SoCs can't do.

So wouldn't this be "magic circuit"? Stripping out features is certainly voodoo to just about every other manufacturer except Apple. Why there are all those boxes on the feature checklists that will be empty!
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