ARM Propels Chinese Rockchip Past Competition with Cortex A17 Core

Oyster Bay, New York - 30 Jul 2014

ABI Research has completed a number of performance and power tests on the first tablet designed with the Chinese Rockchip RK3288 application processor—the first to ship with the new ARM Cortex A17 core. Jim Mielke, VP of Engineering stated that,“The Cortex A17 puts ARM back on the right track in the mobile space.” The analysis found that the Cortex A17 core significantly improved the relationship between power drain versus increased performance and addressed many of the concerns leveled at the A15 core by industry watchers. Mielke went on to state that, “It appears as ARM targeted too wide an audience for the Cortex A15, reaching a bit too far in the performance category. The Cortex A17 puts it back on track for cores targeted specifically for the mobile space.”

rockchip1.jpg

Expect to see wide acceptance of the Cortex A17 throughout the remainder of this year and next as it provides a great foundation by itself, in multi-core configurations (like the quad-core Cortex A17 found in the Rockchip RK3288), and in big.LITTLE configurations with the Cortex A17. The big.LITTLE will still be of value but with the power performance improvement obtained in the Cortex A17, the “little” benefits are not as drastic.

ABI Research’s core comparison

(Cortex A15 as a reference)

Parameter

Cortex A15

Cortex A17

Performance

1

.9

Power Drain

1

.55

“We will be seeing the Cortex A5x series (64b core) soon, and if designed with the same focus as the Cortex A17, ARM could have great cores covering a wide spectrum of phone tiers from low-, mid-, to upper-high-tier,” added Mielke.

These findings are part of ABI Research’s Teardowns Market Research.

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