Samsung's Galaxy S IV switches to same GPU tech as Apple's A-series chips

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Imagination confirmed on Wednesday that Samsung's forthcoming flagship device, the Galaxy S IV, will transition from ARM graphics to Imagination's PowerVR SGX 544MP GPU ? the same graphics tech featured in Apple's iPhones and iPads.

imagine
via Imagination.


In a post on the company's official blog, Imagination confirmed that the unannounced Samsung Galaxy S IV will join many other mobile devices in integrating the PowerVR SGX544 line. In the Galaxy S IV, the PowerVR chip will be paired with Samsung's Octa Exynos 5410.

Apple was among the first to leverage Imagination's technology, secretly signing a multi-use licensing agreement with the firm that was exposed by AppleInsider in 2008. Apple's latest handset, the iPhone 5, features Imagination's PowerVR SGX 543MP3 in a triple-core configuration.

For Samsung, the switch to Imagination's tech represents a considerable shift, as the South Korean conglomerate has historically partnered with ARM for its graphics technology. ARM makes its own GPU, known as Mali, for mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.

The ARM Mali-T604 was featured in Samsung's Exynos 5 Dual, and observers presumed that GPU would also be found in the the 8-core version that will power the Galaxy S IV. But instead, Samsung's new graphics processor is said to be based on the same intellectual property as the GPU in Apple's latest A6 processor.The Imagination GPU confirmed to be in the Galaxy S IV is mostly identical to Apple's iPhone 5 GPU, though Samsung's graphics are expected to have a faster clock speed.

The 543MP3 GPU featured in the iPhone 5 and the 544MP3 in the Galaxy S IV are nearly identical chips, but the 544 model supports Microsoft's DirectX 9.3. Samsung's graphics processor is also expected to run at a higher clock speed, and use the same triple-core configuration as Apple.

AnandTech first revealed in January that the Samsung Exynos 5 Octa would be powered by Imagination's PowerVR SGX 544MP3, and not ARM's Mali. At the time it was believed the three GPU chips would be clocked at up to 533 megahertz, but AppleInsider has learned that the chip will likely run at around 500 megahertz. In comparison, the iPhone 5 GPU is clocked at 350 megahertz.

In the run-up to its March 14 reveal, details about the Galaxy S IV have been leaking steadily. The confirmation from Imagination, though, is one of the few hard details to emerge from a manufacturer with a hand in the device's making.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 45
    I am shocked
  • Reply 2 of 45
    kdarlingkdarling Posts: 1,640member


    Samsung has been using Imagination cores off and on for years.


     


    For example, both the Galaxy S and Galaxy Tab used the SGX540.

  • Reply 3 of 45
    majjomajjo Posts: 574member
    How does the 544mp3 compare to adreno 320?
  • Reply 4 of 45
    Yet more blatant copying from Samsung! LOL
  • Reply 5 of 45


    Also confirmed is the device will look and feel like cheap crap. 


     


    Quote:


    For Samsung, the switch to Imagination's tech represents a considerable shift, as the South Korean conglomerate has historically partnered with ARM for its graphics technology.



     


    Hardly. The US variants of the Galaxy traditionally use Qualcomm's CPU/GPU and rumors from the Verge suggest that continues with this one as well. Samsung's also used Imagination GPUs in tablets. It's not unprecedented. Who writes this stuff? Motorola's used the SGX going back to 2009 in conjunction with OMAP processors. 

  • Reply 6 of 45
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,569member
    How's that reverse engineering going, Sammy?
  • Reply 7 of 45
    razorpitrazorpit Posts: 904member


    Wow, didn't see that one coming...

  • Reply 8 of 45


    Welcome to SamsungInsider.

  • Reply 9 of 45
    thebumthebum Posts: 58member


    Samsung: The Microsoft and Dell of the 2010s.

  • Reply 10 of 45
    tzeshantzeshan Posts: 1,795member


    Apple is doomed.  What good is innovation when there is another company that just copy your successful work?  What can Apple do? 

  • Reply 11 of 45
    am8449am8449 Posts: 343member
    I wonder how Samsung feels about these leaks. Are they just as annoyed as Apple is about losing the "wow" factor of the reveal?
  • Reply 12 of 45
    tangeytangey Posts: 20member
    [QUOTE]
    "Hardly. The US variants of the Galaxy traditionally use Qualcomm's CPU/GPU and rumors from the Verge suggest that continues with this one as well. Samsung's also used Imagination GPUs in tablets. It's not unprecedented. Who writes this stuff? Motorola's used the SGX going back to 2009 in conjunction with OMAP processors. " [/QUOTE]

    You need to differentiate between Samsung Semi,the company that designs Socs and Samsung Consumer Electronics, the company that designs mobile phones amongst other things. They are two different organisations.

    The last time Samsung SEMI designed an Soc using Imagination graphics was the hummingbird that Samsung CE designed into the original Galaxy. Since that time, Samsung Semi has solely used ARMs mali graphics in their Soc designs. Samsung CE have used these chips, Qualcomm chips, and TI chips (that coincidently also contain IMG graphics) amongst others for their handset designs.

    This OCTA core chip is samsung SEMI switching back to IMG graphics for their flagship soc, which samsung CE will use in the galaxy S4 outside of the USA.

    It is a major snub to ARM, Samsung is supposedly ARM's lead partner in graphics solutions and has first access to all of ARM's graphics IP. For them to switch to the same graphics as used by Apple, in my opinion shows that they did not feel that ARM could provide them with a solution that would keep them competitive with Apple handsets.
  • Reply 13 of 45
    mikeb85mikeb85 Posts: 506member


    Much ado about nothing... Plenty of Android smarphones from several manufacturers have used PowerVR GPUs...  Heck, Samsung has used them in the past.


     


    Besides, the US version will likely have Qualcomm's GPU, this will most likely only be for the Exynos version...

  • Reply 14 of 45
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member


    Jut curious why AI finds this newsworthy.  Guess it must be a slow news day.

  • Reply 15 of 45
    macvictamacvicta Posts: 346member


    Would AI be better served creating a spinoff site called SamsungInsider?  I guess they must benefit from the extra traffic generated by Samsung coverage or something but why subject the rest of us to these stories?

  • Reply 16 of 45
    metrixmetrix Posts: 230member


    YOU ARE ALL WRONG!!!!!!!!


    This parallel technology was used as early as 2005 from Samsung's Toilet Division 


     


    http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-SAMSUNG-Digital-Bidet-Toilet-Seat-Dryer-SBD-935-EMS-/150583113849

  • Reply 17 of 45
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,569member
    macvicta wrote: »
    Would AI be better served creating a spinoff site called SamsungInsider?  I guess they must benefit from the extra traffic generated by Samsung coverage or something but why subject the rest of us to these stories?

    Apple doesn't compete in a vacuum. It's good to se what's going on with competitors.
  • Reply 18 of 45


    The Galaxy S started with Power VR in the Hummingbird - Samsung used Mali on the the 2 and 3 (Exynos) and they going back to Power VR for the Exynos 5 Octa


     


    And that is only for the Octa - the Exynos Dual stays with Mali (nexus 10)... They been jumping from one to the other since the start of the Galaxy Line.

  • Reply 19 of 45
    tzeshantzeshan Posts: 1,795member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by agramonte View Post


    Nonsense - The Galaxy S started with Power VR in the Hummingbird - Samsung used Mali on the the 2 and 3 (Exynos) and they going back to Power VR for the Exynos 5 Octa


     


    And that is only for the Octa - the Exynos Dual stays with Mali (nexus 10)... They been jumping from one to the other since the start of the Galaxy Line.





    The sense is why Samsung is doing this back and forth?

  • Reply 20 of 45
    robogoborobogobo Posts: 378member
    Naturally.
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