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There are numerous trends that have been ongoing in the recent years on the market of central processing units (CPUs): increasing share of x86 CPUs with integrated graphics engines and heterogeneous multi-core chips in general, growing importance of low-power and mobile x86 processors, emergence of high-performance ARM system-on-chips for mobile and server applications, and some others. In 2014 all those trends will have a tremendous effect on the market.

Heterogeneous Computing Gaining Importance

The vast majority of modern microprocessors for client personal computers – both from Advanced Micro Devices and Intel Corp. – feature integrated graphics processing units (GPUs). Those heterogeneous multi-core accelerated processing units (APUs) fully support OpenCL (as well as DirectCompute) and can accelerate applications that can take advantage of this API [application programming interface]. Next year APUs will play even bigger role than in 2013.

Early next year AMD will unveil its all-new code-named Kabini APU with heterogeneous system architecture that will bring acceleration of certain programs to a whole new level thanks to hUMA [heterogeneous unified memory architecture] and heterogeneous queuing technologies. Given the fact that next year AMD is not going to introduce new FX-series central processing units with significantly boosted performance compared the existing products (and therefore demand towards FXes will decrease), the share of APUs in AMD’s shipments will get higher.

By the end of the year Intel will also speed up its client chips with code-named Broadwell microprocessors that will brint high-end integrated graphics engines to desktop performance-mainstream offerings, which will basically mean that the majority of new Intel CPUs will carry advanced OpenCL accelerators. As a result, more software developers will be inclined to optimize their highly-parallel apps for chips with OpenCL-compatible heterogeneous multi-core design.

With Kabini and HSA, AMD seems to have a technological lead over Intel when it comes to heterogeneous computing in general. The problem is that there are loads of apps that rely on general-purpose x86 cores and therefore run faster on Intel’s chips. AMD’s main task for the next year will be the same as for the previous three: to communicate its GPGPU-related performance advantages over Intel to end-users and PC makers.

Thanks to the fact that AMD has started to offer APUs for server applications, it can be expected that such chips may start to gain traction there. However, it is impossible to expect these microprocessors to gain any significant market share since those who need performance in highly-parallel apps buy special-purpose accelerators or coprocessors, whereas those who do not need maximum speed do not have programs that take advantage of GPU compute units.

There is also a backside of the rise of heterogeneous computing. As we see with AMD, the company is boosting its GPU-compute capabilities in its chips, but performance of its x86 cores has been growing very slowly over the years. Unfortunately, it does not look like for AMD this is a priority right now. Therefore, do not expect breakthroughs in terms of x86 execution when it comes to Steamroller-based APUs. Perhaps, things will get somewhat better with code-named Excavator cores in 2015.

At present, there are no many reasons to expect dramatic x86 performance gains from Broadwell family of microprocessors. Still, with code-named Skylake chips due in 2015 Intel will bring a number of surprises, such as AVX 3.2 (with 512-bit instructions) and other advantages.

Low-Power Chips on the Rise

The demand towards ultra-thin notebooks, 2-in-1 devices and high-performance tablets is growing rapidly. Moreover, PC makers along with microprocessor developers are making those products more appealing in a bid to better compete against media tablets. As a result, next year leading CPU manufacturers will pay even more attention to ultra-low voltage chips.

At present, Intel Corp. offers a range of so-called Y-series microprocessors with 7W or even 4.5W scenario design power (SDP) based on high-performance x86 micro-architectures (e.g., Ivy Bridge or Haswell). In addition, the Santa Clara, California-based chip developer offers different processors with low power consumption based on low-power/low-cost micro-architectures (e.g., Silvermont) aimed at various portable devices. Next year Intel is projected to become more aggressive with its mobile offerings: the company will further cut power consumption of high-performance Broadwell chips and will enhance system-on-chips based on new-generation low-power Airmont and Goldmont micro-architectures.

AMD also offers low-power chips for all kinds of devices from notebooks to 2-in-1s to tablets. However, the company has not yet introduced such products based on high-performance micro-architecture (e.g., Piledriver, Steamroller). By contrast, it provides ultra-energy-efficient offerings featuring its low-power micro-architectures (e.g., Jaguar and Puma) only. At present AMD is interested to finally roll-out a competitive system-on-chip for media tablets, hence, this will be the company’s focus for 1H 2014. At the same time the firm cannot ignore the trend towards high-performance tablets and 2-in-1s. While AMD’s Jaguar and Puma seem to be good, they cannot compete with Haswell in terms of horsepower. So expect the Sunnyvale, California-based chip designer to expand its Kabini line with various ULP models featuring ~15W TDP and 11W SDP.

When it comes to ultra-low-power x86 microprocessors for clients (up to 10W SDP), Intel clearly has a lead over AMD since it can offer very energy-efficient [sub-10W or lower] chips based on both high-performance and power-efficient micro-architectures. By contrast, AMD can offer only Puma as a solution for low-power x86 products in 2014. In fact, this should be enough for certain media tablets, 2-in-1s and inexpensive notebooks, hence, AMD will sell plenty of its code-named Beema and Mullins APUs. The higher-end of the market will be occupied by Intel Core Y-series microprocessors with 6W – 7W SDP.

It is rumoured that by the end of the year AMD will introduce a consumer-class SoC based on ARM Cortex-A57 general-purpose cores. Theoretically, this will likely give AMD an edge over Intel’s SoCs when it comes to power consumption and graphics performance. However, with ARM inside, AMD will compete against several very powerful application processor designers who use ARM’s technology. The result of this rivalry is completely unknown.

The race for lower-power consumption by two makers of x86 chips has its side-effect as well. In a bid to make their chips consume less energy, AMD and Intel ceased to focus on pure performance, but started to make huge compromises. As a result, the horsepower of client chips is growing relatively slowly these days.

A New Era Begins for Mobile System-on-Chips

Three recently announced mobile application processors – Apple A7, Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 and Snapdragon 410 – predict the capabilities of next-year’s mobile system-on-chips better than any prophet. The general trends are pretty clear: ARMv8 64-bit architecture/instruction-set, new-generation graphics engines (e.g., ARM Mali T700-series, ImgTec’s PowerVR “Rogue” 6-series, Nvidia Kepler, Qualcomm Adreno 400-series, Vivante Vega and so on), support for ultra-HD resolutions and HEVC codec in addition to support for new types of cameras as well as 4G/LTE advanced connectivity.

64-Bit

Apple has clearly managed to leave everyone else behind with the world’s first application processors with 64-bit ARMv8-compatible cores. While at present there are not a lot of advantages that the 64-bit may bring to end-users, in about two years’ time there will be many programs that will benefit from the new technology. Given the fact that end-users will be looking forward smartphones and tablets with 64-bit app processors, developers of SoCs will make everything to speed-up their plans. At present it is hard to predict who among the leading designers of mobile SoCs will be the second after Apple to release a chip with 64-bit processing capability.

Potentially, Nvidia Corp.’s Tegra 5 can feature Cortex-A57 cores since the company is not yet ready with its Denver cores (which are due in late 2014 – early 2015). While performance provided by Cortex-A15 should be enough for a lot of tasks, Nvidia just cannot lose marketing war against other SoC developers, hence, it will likely adopt ARMv8 cores from ARM for its 2014 Tegra line.

In addition, it is also logical for Samsung Electronics to install a 64-bit chip into its upcoming Galaxy S5 smartphone so to be on par with Apple. The problem is that the firm historically launched app processors for flagship handsets several months ahead of the device; assuming that the S5 is scheduled for a March launch, the processor is either days from its formal announcement or the S5 will be based on another [non-Samsung] chip, perhaps, not a 64-bit one.

Qualcomm has already announced Snapdragon 410 app processors with 64-bit processing tech aimed at mainstream smartphones. Actual products based on the new chips are due in the second half of the year. Keeping in mind that at the Consumer Electronics Show 2013 Qualcomm introduced the whole line of this year’s SoCs, it can be expected that at the CES 2014 the company will also reveal its 2014 roadmap, which will likely include different 64-bit SoCs aimed at various market segments.

Mediatek, Rockchip, Via Technologies and other smaller app processor designers will be unable to significantly accelerate their roadmaps due to limited resources. Moreover, even if they can, their customers – who produce inexpensive smartphones and tablets – will prefer more affordable rather than feature-rich SoCs. Still, by the end of the year even smaller makers may adopt low-power/low-cost ARM Cortex-A53 cores.

Next-Generation Graphics

New-generation ultra-mobile graphics processing units – from ARM Holdings, Imagination Technologies, Nvidia, Qualcomm, Vivante and some others – will not only deliver new levels of performance for mobile devices as well as support for new resolutions, but will also enable GPU-compute technologies on smartphones, tablets and other consumer electronics.

The latest graphics cores from various designers fully support OpenCL application programming interface and therefore can perform general-purpose processing on GPUs, thus significantly boosting compute capabilities of mobile application processors. While it is impossible to expect teraflop-class performance from a low-power chip, even 100GFLOPS can provide substantial advantages in demanding applications that can take advantage of GPU computing.

Thanks to support of the latest graphics APIs including OpenGL ES 3.0, OpenGL ES 2.0, OpenGL 3.x/4.x, OpenCL 1.x and DirectX 10, and enhanced performance, the new GPUs will also bring new levels of graphics effects to mobile games, thus further improving their positions against those designed for dedicated game consoles.


Infinity Blade III running on Apple iPhone 5S with A7 SoC inside.

Apple again was the first with adoption of new-generation graphics processing unit: the A7 features Imagination Technologies PowerVR “Rogue” 6-series GPU. At present Apple’s A7 is the world’s highest performing mobile graphics processor.

Qualcomm also formally rolled out its Snapdragon 805 with next-gen Adreno 420 graphics engine. Besides, the Snapdragon 805 is the world’s first commercial mobile 1GP/s ISP (image signal processor) and the world’s first mobile SoC with support for HEVC and 4K resolution. This is also the first chip to be made using 20nm process technology at TSMC.

Nvidia is projected to reveal Tegra 5 SoC with Kepler architecture graphics either at the CES 2014 in January or at the Mobile World Congress 2014 in February. It is unknown when actual products based on the new code-named Logan application processor are set to emerge.

Samsung will adopt a new-gen mobile graphics engine for its system-on-chips that will power its next smartphones and tablets. What is unclear is whether Mediatek, Rockchip, Via Technologies and other developers of inexpensive app processors will also include all-new graphics processors into their new chips.

Mobile SoCs Close the Gap with Fully-Fledged CPUs

With the rapid development of mobile devices in the recent years, system-on-chips that power smartphones and tablets got significantly more advanced than they were just three years ago. In many ways, they are closing the gap between themselves and processors aimed at fully-fledged personal computers. Some day we will see similar capabilities and technologies on microprocessors designed for completely different applications.

Microprocessors for Wearable Computing Devices to Show Up

In the recent months Sony, Samsung Electronics and Qualcomm introduced their smartwatches, OmniVision unleashed reference design of smart glasses with LCOS display, marking the beginning of the consumer wearable computing era. Next year there will be more of such devices as well as specially-designed system-on-chips that will power them.


Qualcomm Toq smartwatch

Simplistic SoCs for ultra-low-power devices have existed for years, but with such well-known products as the forthcoming Apple iWatch, processors inside them will get publicity that they have never had before. Moreover Intel will also attract attention to its Quark platform, thus attracting a lot of public interest.


Omnivision smart-goggles prototype

In a bid to fulfill demand for wearable computing platforms, companies like Broadcom, Qualcomm and others will also offer appropriate solutions specifically tailored for consumer electronics-class devices. In a bid to better compete against Quark, they will most likely introduce special brand-names for such system-on-chips.

Intel Quark chip

The success of wearable computing products will be determined by proper software, not hardware, at least initially. Therefore, do not expect the market of smart-watches or smart-goggles to explode in 2014. However, it will emerge and therefore there will be competition between hardware makers.

Servers, Micro-Servers and Embedded Applications

While a number of noticeable events will happen on the market of servers, micro-servers and embedded applications, do not expect any particular breakthroughs in 2014. ARM Holdings will finally become a small player on the market of servers and micro-servers. AMD will introduce a range of its ARM-based solutions and Intel will continue to offer both extreme-performance as well as low-power server system-on-chips.


A slide from an Intel roadmap document. Image first published by VR-Zone web-site.

One of the most noticeable events due in 2014 is the emergence of Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 “Haswell-EP” microprocessor with up to 14 cores as well as dual-socket Grantley platform based on C610-series “Wellsburg” chipset. The latter will bring support for quad-channel DDR4 memory as well as a number of all-new server-class capabilities. In addition, Intel will roll-out all-new Atom-class Xeon system-on-chips (based on Airmont architecture) designed for high-density/micro-servers.

AMD’s server plans for 2014 are pretty much well known. The company will refresh its Opteron CPU for dual-socket and quad-socket configuration with Warsaw design that will continue to pack 12 or 16 Piledriver cores like today’s chips for the same market segment. No significant performance improvement is expected. For uniprocessor servers AMD will introduce Opteron “Berlin” chip with four Steamroller cores, GCN graphics compute units and HSA features. Berlin will replace current quad-/octa-core Opteron chips for 1P machines. Essentially, AMD will try to persuade server software designers to optimize their applications for GPUs. Finally, the Sunnyvale, California-based company will roll-out its first ARM-based server product code-named Seattle with four or eight ARM Cortex-A57 cores.

Following its new strategy, AMD will offer a family of new chips aimed at embedded market, including Bald Eagle (2/4 Steamroller cores, AMD GCN graphics cores, most probably HSA features), Hierofalcon (4/8 ARM Cortex-A57, 10Gb Ethernet) and Steppe Eagle (2/4 Puma cores, AMD Radeon HD 8000 graphics). Those products should help AMD to address various embedded products, particularly those that need high graphics performance.

Final Words

In 2014 the microprocessors will continue to do what they have been doing very well throughout their history: gain functionality as a result of gaining transistors. However, the main focus for many client x86 chips will be low power consumption, but not performance breakthroughs. When it comes to ARM-based client chips, then there is a different focus: high performance and limited power consumption.

The actual market of central processing units will mirror the market of computing devices in general.

Desktops will continue to stagnate, which is why performance of mainstream desktop parts will grow very slowly. The only good news for PC enthusiasts for next year will be emergence of next-gen Intel high-end desktop platform code-named Haswell-E with DDR4 memory support.

Traditional notebooks will continue to lose the pace of growth, leaving the market for 2-in-1s, ultra-thin notebooks and high-performance tablets. Therefore, expect the rise of ultra-low-voltage processors based on various micro-architectures: modern consumers clearly perform portability and battery life to performance.

Ultra-mobile devices like media tablets and smartphones will continue to close the gap with PCs and thus will get chips that support 64-bit computing capabilities, up-to-date graphics processing units, support for higher resolution displays, improved connectivity and other things.

Servers will continue to evolve in different directions. There will be feature-packed multi-core chips for high-performance machines and there will be low-power system-on-chips aimed at micro-servers and high-density servers. While ARM-based CPUs for servers will be launched, do not expect them to gain a serious market share in 2014: interested parties will first test-drive them before building large-scale deployments.

Tags: Intel, AMD, Core, Haswell, Kabini, Radeon, GCN, Puma, Jaguar, Airmont, Silvermont, ARM, Cortex, Samsung, Nvidia, Tesla, Kepler, Qualcomm, Snapdragon, Adreno, Fusion, 28nm, 20nm, Haswell-E, Haswell-EP, HEDT, Xeon, Vivante, OpenGL, OpenCL, DirectX, Vega, PowerVR, Imagination Technologies, Mali

Discussion

Comments currently: 37
Discussion started: 12/27/13 12:10:52 PM
Latest comment: 01/30/14 08:38:41 AM
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[1-9]

1. 
Other than for servers, DDR4 is an expensive tech of no value to consumers.
4 3 [Posted by: beenthere  | Date: 12/27/13 12:10:52 PM]
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that and considering no desktop cpu has enough throughput to utilize DDR4 yet. DDR3's throughput isn't even close to taping out it yet. the highest throughput a latest desktop cpu is capable of utilizing right now is DDR3 1866
3 4 [Posted by: SteelCity1981  | Date: 12/27/13 02:14:45 PM]
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Unscrupulous marketeers use new tech to dupe the technically challenged while they laugh all the way to the bank.

You should see the fools argue over 2133+ MHz. RAM speed benefits in the forums. It's laughable but sad that they have no clue. They'll buy into DDR4 too because they have more of Mommy's money than tech knowledge.
5 4 [Posted by: beenthere  | Date: 12/27/13 02:24:41 PM]
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With a balanced system, some application will take benefits of fast ram speed. You can find articles out there showing that the sweet spot being 2133mhz.

Here's interesting results obtained in BF4 at 1080p at Ultra quality settings. See the following link for more info about the test.

I7 3770k @ stock speed
Mushkin Enhance Rigeback 2133 @ 1.5v
7970 Crossfire 1080p:

BF4/Ultra @ 1333: 93.425 FPS average
BF4/Ultra @ 1600: 105.600 FPS average
BF4/Ultra @ 2133: 111.012 FPS average

http://forum.xbitlabs.com...topic.php?f=8&t=20514
0 0 [Posted by: MHudon  | Date: 01/30/14 08:38:41 AM]
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this actually does Intel® Core™ i7-4770R, but if ddr4 is not implemented it doesnt mean it will not saturate it. you must now think about consumer cpus as cpu+GPU as one.
1 1 [Posted by: Peter Janetka  | Date: 01/02/14 04:23:31 PM]
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People said the same thing when DDR3 and PCIe 2.0 were introduced.

I don't get why people like you are against technological improvements. When new technology are introduced they first make appearance in server/workstation market, then trickle down to consumer market.

Also, DDR4 does more than just increasing throughput. Funny you slam people down for lack of tech knowledge when you are no better. For one, it further decrease power consumption, which is a plus for server (it adds up) and mobile market (increase battery life).
6 1 [Posted by: trumpet-205  | Date: 12/27/13 07:40:31 PM]
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I don't know of anyone saying that about neither at least not anyone that knew computers. pci-e 2.0 was badly needed gpu's were already going over the bandwidth of what pic-e allowed. DDR2 was also needed as cpu throughputs were reaching the limits of DDR2's capabilities. Both came out when products where above or reaching their limit with the current technology. that's not happening now. pci-e2.0 is still yet you get fully saturated by any existing gpu, unless you are using 3 highend gpu's. and performance of cpu's are slowing down instead are focusing more on lower power consumption, which DDR4's throughput won't be utilized for the consumer market. DDR4 may help with power consumption but DDR3L is lower voltage then regular DDR4 and you will have to wait 4 or so more years to see DDR4L to trump that. There are still devices that use DDR2L we are just now finally seeing DDR3L come in mass produced products.

0 1 [Posted by: SteelCity1981  | Date: 12/28/13 11:27:19 AM]
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When PCIe 2.0 were introduced, at that time GPU has yet to saturate PCIe 1.0 bandwidth. So there were bunch of people said PCIe 2.0 was useless, like how people is treating PCIe 3.0 now.

Thing is, GPU ain't the only thing that strains PCIe, RAID card in server market for example needs all the bandwidth it can.

Also GPU used server/workstation market needs bandwidth too. GPGPU is already saturating PCIe 2.0. People here seems to think that GPU is for gaming and nothing else.
2 0 [Posted by: trumpet-205  | Date: 12/28/13 12:40:21 PM]
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that's not true NVidia's 7xxx GeForce series were already saturating past pci-ex. 1.0

because pci-3.0 has been out for 3 years now and no single or dual gpu is able to saturate pci-2.0 yet.

you're talking servers on main frames not consumer products. load enough hardware on a servers main frame and you can surpass even pci-4.0 standards.

0 1 [Posted by: SteelCity1981  | Date: 12/28/13 07:37:52 PM]
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Samsung would disagree. LPDDR4 is coming next year and beats LPDDR3 in every way possible.
http://www.xbitlabs.com/n...b_LPDDR4_Mobile_DRAM.html
2 1 [Posted by: Memristor  | Date: 12/31/13 10:27:16 AM]
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2. 
AMD is very suspicious lately...
They doesn't tell us everything, otherwise the shareholders should have most likely start abandoning the ship by now.
They should now something we don't, how can they expect the company to be OK with no new FX CPUs this year?
We where expecting something to try to catch with intel, not something like "we make apu now, we will see for FX later".

I mean OK their APUs are interesting but...
2 3 [Posted by: nitro912gr  | Date: 12/27/13 05:58:09 PM]
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It's been known for 12 months that AMD will no longer pursue big cores because the market has shrunk to be now unprofitable (return on R&D). There is apparently a market for games consoles, however. You see, it's not all about your wants, it's about existing markets and generating company profit so at the end of the day chip engineers can buy food for their families. So expect an FX branded APU in the future.
1 0 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 12/28/13 07:45:57 AM]
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but I'm a customer if it is not about my wants I will no longer be a customer.

And what I want now is something stronger for the future, I don't worry for the next 5 years or so because I will upgrade my six core phenom for a fx 8350 soon and for what I want it is a bit worst than a top intel CPU , but what about next?
That worries me, I don't have problem switch to intel but this is definitely gonna cost me more money.
1 0 [Posted by: nitro912gr  | Date: 12/29/13 03:54:31 AM]
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Computer enthusiasts like you and I (and all Xbiters) are in the minority. We comprise a small market that is now unprofitable for AMD. Intel will be the only source for big cores and even its R&D expenditure will decrease and be diverted to other faster growing markets.
0 0 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 12/29/13 06:02:25 AM]
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3. 
Unscrupulous marketeers goes, also, for USB thumb drives, most thumb/flash drives can not even saturate a USB 2.0 port's bandwidth, so why spend more money on a USB 3.0 thumb drive, as most of those can not saturate the USB 2.0 bandwith also! I just get a good laugh, every time I see a thumbdrive advertised as USB 3.0 with no real Read/write speeds printed on the package, or the ad! I have seen on occasion, read speeds posted, but alomost never write speeds. I like what the HSA foundation is working towards, but until it becomes standard, the ability to use CPU and GPU for any compute task, I'll stay with last year's technology for my new computer purchases, it saves money. My current laptop came pre-DownUpgraded to windows 7, and the same make and model also ships with SUSE Linux, so I do not have to worry about driver support, when I switch it from windows 7, to linux after 2020. I am looking forward to laptops based on the ARMv8 ISA, from both Nvidia, and AMD, beacuse I know the graphics will be better than Intel's, an I think Apple will be the first to make a Laptop based on Apple's custom ARM 64 bit ARM(ISA) based products, that are even more powerfull than the Arm Holdings' Refrence ARMv8 designs, that have yet to reach the market. Apple could very well take its A7 cyclone CPU Microarchitecture, and make a 4 core, or 6 core chip that could run OSX applications , on a sub macbook AIR form factor! If I do get a future new laptop, I really hope some OEM would take a low power ARMv8 server chip with at least 16+ cores, for ray tracing, and a high resolution screen, and descrete GPU, or a Many core ARMv8 "APU" type CPU/GPU mashup with as many CPU cores as possable. The WINTEL type duopolies are a thing of the past, and I see laptop/pc OEMs beginning to move fruther away from being forced to use only WINTEL software/hardware as each quarter year passes.
4 1 [Posted by: BigChiefRunAmok  | Date: 12/27/13 06:10:15 PM]
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" most thumb/flash drives can not even saturate a USB 2.0 port's bandwidth"

tell that to my sandisk extreme drive, it does 200mb/s (3-4x USB2.0 specs)
0 0 [Posted by: basroil  | Date: 01/16/14 04:32:41 PM]
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4. 
Till the market settles and an O/S is in place which the market likes the x86 sales will decline or stagnate whilst the O/S which people like takes market share viz ARM O/S. The x86 chasing the low powered sector is not going to help. The market has spoken and is buying the ARM O/S's not because of the power draw but because it does its job well and is basically hassle free as was XP. This comes back to bad management on the O/S's maker and good management on the other O/S makers. I don't foresee this changing for at LEAST A YEAR UNTIL A NEW BROOM SWEEPS THE GARBAGE OUT.
The MARKET HAS MOVED AND US X86 USERS HAVE BEEN SADDLED WITH AN o/s WHICH DOES NOT MEET OUR DEMANDS NOW SO THERE IS VERY LITTLE REASON TO GO OUT AND RELIEVE THE PC market by upgrading our equipment as we don't want/like the newer O/S.
1 1 [Posted by: tedstoy  | Date: 12/27/13 08:42:51 PM]
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That's correct Ted. Microsoft came out with a radically redesigned Windows with crippled functionality that did not entice buyers. Until MS gets a new CEO and points the ship in the right direction, new computer sales will be flat. And stating the obvious in case MS management missed it, if MS does not release Windows 9 as a proper full desktop OS with Start menu, then expect the bad times to continue for the computer industry and the possible serious demise of MS itself.
2 0 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 12/28/13 08:00:56 AM]
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According to NPD sales of Chrome-books now tally 21% of all notebook sales in the US for the 1st 11months this year. and 8% of all computer and tablet sales combined for the 2013 form the previous year less than 1/10th of 1%
2 0 [Posted by: tedstoy  | Date: 12/29/13 04:45:45 AM]
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Hard facts don't lie. I could imagine Ballmer head-butting the boardroom table over and over on hearing that news.
1 0 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 12/29/13 06:04:56 AM]
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Wow! Windows 8.1 is so much better in almost any aspect than Windows 7 which was basically crap since it's release.
You peopl really like talking shit!
Windows 8.1 starts faster, runs faster, is more stable and definitely has less bugs than Windows 7 with latest patches and has yet to crash once unlike Windows 7 that crashes every once in a while.
BTW the classic start menu was such utter garbage and failed design that the new start screen looks like a space shuttle improvement compared to a dog cart!
1 3 [Posted by: Zingam  | Date: 12/29/13 06:14:41 AM]
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Adding that tag line at the bottom doesn't give you credibility.
4 0 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 12/29/13 07:13:02 PM]
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I could almost see the tongue in cheek as you typed that out Zingam.
It made me laugh.
2 1 [Posted by: caring1  | Date: 12/29/13 10:41:10 PM]
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Fooled me.
0 1 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 12/30/13 08:55:44 AM]
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hahaha nice troll... /fail/
1 2 [Posted by: amdzorz  | Date: 12/30/13 12:04:54 PM]
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Do you actually use Windows 8?

Have you ever used the "Start menu" with a bunch of installed programs on a small screen?

0 1 [Posted by: Zingam  | Date: 01/02/14 10:31:41 AM]
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M$ knows pretty well that, if legacy apps stop working, Windows is gone. It's gone and M$ is not cappable of creating a new OS from scratch as Apple - many times - and Google did.

I'm not saying just about users, I'm talking about devs too. If current IDEs aren't nicely ported to new OS and they are forced to relearn, only M$-retarded-fanboys will remain in .Net.

That said, M$ has aimed to create a unified OS, that works the same from servers to tablets. They MUST keep desktop apps working over tablets, and then will be able to make desktop-used users to move to Windows tablet and keep their legacy apps. That's their strategy, use old Windows apps to lure desktop users into Windows tablet. For that to happen, they NEED Windows to look THE SAME thru different hardware environments.

The threat here is bad developed softwares, that don't even work only with keyboard, much worse work only with touch. It's damn annoying to use virtual keyboard (even worse Windows' one) to interact with an app over tablet or phone. It gets worse when that app eats 200MB RAM and keeps a thread at 100% all the time.
1 0 [Posted by: Hikari  | Date: 01/02/14 06:41:56 PM]
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This is very true, and Microsoft virtually has to lower the price of Windows, while keeping the huge software base, to stay in the game. Without the OS price burden, Windows based tablets/phones become much more viable.

Companies and more demanding users can never settle with 'some program downloaded 2,000,000 times' from 'some store' costing '5.00$' - a strong and well supported OS has to stand behind strong software developers. An OS, which covers whole ecosystem (desktops/servers, laptops, tablets, phones) is the only thing which is acceptable for a large business (even individuals), and precisely why Android has no place there (well, in the foreseeable future - and even then I imagine companies wouldn't be too keen on Google spying on them and advertisement-supported OS).

Even as an individual user, I still have 10 years old software which I need, and which has no chance to be transferred to any new OS. Fact is, due to age distribution in my family, none can have only Android and have all needs fulfilled (tried, but Windows-based ecosystem in the house is needed by everyone)

As my desktops are powerful enough (even with low segment CPU) to suit my needs, I can welcome Windows 8.1 for not increasing requirements, even lowering them in a few cases. As for the W7, I can say a number of bad things about it, too - over years of using it, I still fail to see advantages over XP - except more than 3Gb of RAM. 'Glorious' START button - well, surprise surprise - some long time Windows users never used it - nothing against it, and it should be returned if it is that popular, but for me personally, it is as if 'indexing' is removed and everyone is protesting now
0 0 [Posted by: snakefist  | Date: 01/08/14 01:09:24 PM]
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5. 
New mARCH is all well and good but software is STILL trying to catch up/fully utilise more than 2/4 cores and until that happens we are not seeing the full potential of multi core CPU's

I just hope the new APU's will not be crippled by lazy/not enough time programmers
1 0 [Posted by: alpha0ne  | Date: 12/28/13 03:19:05 AM]
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- collapse thread

 
The SDK software and programming language libraries have been in existence for a few years now, to take advantage of more cores! M$ C++ amp, AMD APP, for x86, and ARM! It is not about lazy programmers, it is about the SDK(Software Development Kit), and there are plenty of SDKs that make it easy to use more than one core, and optimize code for parallel processing, including offloading general purpose workloads to the GPU. This "mARCH" word that you use, has nuthing to do with a CPUs ability to run current/future software on more cores, and any new microarchitecture or instructions developed/added to a CPU will always have the SDKs and libraries relased long before the hardware is released to the general market! So its more of the lazy/cheep aplication software companies, not the programmers fault. Blender 3D, an open source graphics program, has a CPU render, that will use every available Core/Processor thread on a CPU at 100%, so if the SDK that the Blender Open Source software was developed on has multiprocessor ability, you can bet that the commerical applications have had it longer. No New CPU, APU, GPU comes to the market without the software toolchain/libraries (SDKs) ready long before the hardware is released. The Larger CPU/GPU companies actually simulate the new CPUs and GPUs hardware on computing clusters and FPGAs, and begin developing the Software SDKs for the new hardware before even the engineering samples start arriving from the fab!
0 0 [Posted by: BigChiefRunAmok  | Date: 12/29/13 05:55:09 PM]
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I suspect mARCH is actually meant to read architecture, meaning hardware. *shrugs*
0 0 [Posted by: caring1  | Date: 12/29/13 10:44:02 PM]
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6. 
It is annoying to read nun-abbreviated expressions like central processing units, Advanced Micro Devices, accelerated processing units, etc. If you wanna make sure that newbs will understand "techy words", you can use the abbr HTML4 element with a title attribute. With probable exception of IE trash, those words will be underlined with dots and upon hovering them the full text will be shown. It's elegant, semantic and nice for reading.
0 0 [Posted by: Hikari  | Date: 01/02/14 03:03:07 PM]
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7. 
Regarding Intel, AMD and enthusiasts, yes, we are in instinction.

In the past, top chips were used for marketing. They announced an i7 and that took ppl attention, then most ppl bought i5 and i3. They announced GTX x90 and that took ppl attention, then most ppl bought GTS x60 and GS x30.

The issue is that it's not happening anymore. Ppl don't want desktop as much as before, now they want tablets. They wanna play in their laptops and smartphones. Because of that, top chips don't lure buyers anymore, most ppl just ignore them, and their smaller brothers, and keep buying a new smartphone every 3 months just because Android 10.3.2 was launched and their old phone only supports Android 10.3.0.

Still regarding games, basically RTS and FPS and a few more still live in PC. Sadly, gamers moved to consoles. And not only gamers, developers too, thanks to hard-to-keep-cracked measures.

Of course AMD will leave enthusiasts market at this rate, this market requires more investment and all AMD knows to do now is lower its prices. Even Intel is doing so, leaving old or refreshed chips to feed it while they spend their budget rushing into mobile.

i7 is trash now and i7 EE is almost 2 generations behind. And why that's happening? because PCs don't profit anymore and they don't wanna invest in it, just let it be. We will have to live with i5, and know what? it's enough, at least for me.
2 0 [Posted by: Hikari  | Date: 01/02/14 06:29:40 PM]
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- collapse thread

 
i7 is not trash man, is still the best CPU you can find for games, for example. Thing is, because of lack of competition from AMD on this very large segment, the recent releases were only small upgrades over previews generation, but no radical changes like the ones from Core 2 to Core i.
0 0 [Posted by: TAViX  | Date: 01/06/14 10:55:54 AM]
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8. 
Quote: Potentially, Nvidia Corp.’s Tegra 5 can feature Cortex-A57 cores since the company is not yet ready with its Denver cores (which are due in late 2014 – early 2015).

Completely wrong information. This is 2014 get with the program.

Nvidia Tegra K1 is A15 32bit 1st half and Denver 64 bit 2nd half 2014.
0 0 [Posted by: s23e7h4kf936hklnf7y8b  | Date: 01/21/14 06:46:34 AM]
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9. 
Very nice article as expected from Anton.

Can anyone tell me what the advantages of 64bit ARM are for mobile computing?
0 0 [Posted by: CSMR  | Date: 01/28/14 07:28:04 AM]
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