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CES: Qualcomm CEO claims firm will be a leader in 64-bit chips

Dismisses talk of 64-bit being a gimmick
Mon Jan 06 2014, 20:30
Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf at CES 2014

LAS VEGAS: CHIP DESIGNER Qualcomm's CEO Steve Mollenkopf said at CES on Monday that the firm will become a leader in the 64-bit processor market, despite an executive at the firm having earlier dismissed the technology as little more than a gimmick.

Qualcomm's new CEO gave a presentation at CES in Las Vegas today, at which he claimed that despite that executive's dismissal of 64-bit chip technology, it aims to become a leader in the 64-bit processor market going forward.

Mollenkopf said, "64-bit is one of many features that validate the theme that the phone and computing just meld together, making a strong opportunity for Qualcomm.

"We thought that 64-bit would come at a slightly different timing, but it will come, and when it comes, Qualcomm will drive it as a leader. We will drive it at mass market too, not just at a premium level."

This follows remarks from a Qualcomm executive following the launch of the iPhone 5S last year, when he said, "Predominantly you need [64-bits] for memory addressability beyond 4GB. That's it. You don't really need it for performance and the kinds of applications that 64-bit get used in mostly are large, server-class applications. I think they are doing a marketing gimmick."

Qualcomm isn't looking to take just 64-bit chips to the mass market, as the firm said it will be looking to take LTE mainstream in 2014 to bring 4G speeds to all.

Mollenkopf said, "Another thing you're going to see in 2014 is that LTE will become a mainstream feature, not premium. You're going to see that happen in a big way. LTE is going everywhere - it's already in the car, and it's replacing things that used to be connected to WiFi. We're very excited about LTE driving in 2014."

Qualcomm also addressed concerns that it was failing in the tablet industry, with manufacturers instead opting for Nvidia and Intel chips.

"In 2013, and continuing into 2014, I think we have a strong position in some very important tablets - such as the Kindle Fire HDX and Google Nexus tablet," Mollenkopf said.

"We see the tablet market as a very important growth area for us going forward, it's going to be a good market for us," Mollenkopf added, before revealing that the firm will also be exploring the automotive market in 2014 as well as continuing its focus on wearable technology. µ


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