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MWC: Qualcomm says games and 3D will drive multi-core mobile chips

Chipmaker hopes to lure punters with play time
Wed Feb 16 2011, 00:46

PLAY TIME will drive demand for multi-core mobile chips, says Qualcomm.

Following the trail blazed by PC makers using gaming as a way to push ever faster processors and graphics cards, a combination of gaming and high definition 3D content will generate demand for multi-core system-on-chip (SoC) processors. Not only will gaming play its part but the gaming benchmark of frames per second (FPS) will be reborn as a 3D performance metric for smartphones according to Qualcomm.

A day after Qualcomm launched its latest Snapdragon chips, the firm said it is trying to educate users about how to get that all-important slick user experience. Raj Talluri, VP of product management at Qualcomm said that the focus of high-end Snapdragon chips will be on gaming and 3D.

The INQUIRER asked whether there were any other use cases driving demand for high-end multi-core Snapdragon chips, to which Talluri mentioned that the snappy user interfaces such as WebOS 2.1 found on the HP Pre 3, HP Touchpad and HP Veer, require a chip that delivers around 40 to 50 FPS. Talluri demonstrated high definition 3D being output from a Qualcomm reference device that required the SoC to maintain at least 60 FPS - two 30 FPS video streams.

From the demonstration there is no doubt that the latest crop of Snapdragon chips announced yesterday are fast. Game and 3D video playback were smooth and had anti-aliasing and shader capabilities that a few years ago wouldn't be amiss in an AMD or Nvidia graphics product demo.

What Talluri's comments suggest is that those who do not care for gaming or watching 3D content on their smartphone might be well served with mid-range devices in the near future.

For many that might mean not having to shell out the better part of £500 on a smartphone. µ

 

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