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Galaxy S23 could feature ARM’s next-gen CPU cores with improved performance, efficiency

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Last updated: June 29th, 2022 at 07:53 UTC+02:00

ARM has unveiled its next-generation CPU and GPU cores that will be used in 2023 Android smartphones, at least the flagship ones. The Cortex-X3, Cortex-A715, and the refreshed Cortex-A510 CPU cores could be used in the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, Exynos 2300, and MediaTek’s next-generation flagship chipset.

Cortex-X3 offers 25% higher peak performance, Cortex-A715 has 20% better power efficiency

The Cortex-X3 CPU core succeeds last year’s Cortex-X2 CPU that’s used in the Dimensity 9000/9000+, Exynos 2200, and the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 series. The new prime CPU core features 22% higher peak performance, but only when used with a 3nm fabrication process. When using the same process node (4nm) as last year, expect an 11% performance uplift. It only supports 64-bit instruction code, which means it can’t run older 32-bit apps.

ARM Cortex-X3 A715 A510 CPU

ARM claims its new prime CPU core offers 34% better performance than Intel’s Core i7-1260P mid-tier laptop CPU. That’s saying a lot, and it also means that this new CPU core could be used in mid-range and high-end thin-and-light laptops. However, it’s still not as fast as Apple’s M1 and M2 processors.

The company also unveiled its mid-tier CPU core, the Cortex-A715, and the refreshed version of the low-end Cortex-A510 CPU core. It offers just 5% faster performance as ARM has focused heavily on improving the power efficiency of its mid-tier CPU core. According to the company, the Cortex-A715 should offer 20% better power efficiency when used on the same process node as last year. It means that Android smartphones that will launch next year could offer longer battery life.

ARM also unveiled a refreshed version of the Cortex-A510 little CPU cores with the same name. The refreshed version will offer similar performance but 5% higher power efficiency. Surprisingly, it brings optional support for 32-bit apps, which was missing in the original Cortex-A510.

Overall, ARM’s new CPU cores should offer higher peak and sustained performance as well as better power efficiency. Gains will be higher when used in a chipset made using TSMC’s and Samsung Foundry’s upcoming 3nm fabrication process.

ARM’s Immortalis-G715 GPU is its first to offer hardware-based raytracing

ARM Immortalis-G715 G715 G615 GPU

The British firm, which supplies its microarchitecture to almost all smartphone chip makers, also unveiled its next-generation GPU family. The Immortalis-G715 is ARM’s first GPU with hardware raytracing support.

Raytracing is a new technology that better simulates how light illuminates a scene within a game compared to rasterization. It is used in PS5, Xbox Series X|S, Nvidia RTX, and AMD Radeon RX6000 GPUs. Samsung’s Exynos 2200 was the first smartphone chipset to support the feature on a hardware level.

ARM Immortalis Mali-G715 G615 GPU

The Immortalis-G715 GPU has raytracing units in each core, which means that raytracing performance increases with each core count. ARM claims that 4% area on the GPU results in 300% better raytracing performance compared to software-based raytracing. The new GPU offers 15% higher graphics processing performance and 15% better power efficiency. ARM also claims 2x machine learning performance compared to Mali-G710 GPU from last year.

The Mali-G715 (sans Immortalis) is the same GPU except for its raytracing abilities. It can be configured with 7-9 cores and will primarily be used in upper mid-range smartphones. ARM also unveiled the mid-range Mali-G615 GPU, which comes from a 1-6 core count. The Mali-G715 and the Mali-G615 support VRS (Variable Rate Shading) and offer the same performance and efficiency improvements as the Immortalis-G715 GPU.

When can we expect smartphone processors with ARM’s new CPU and GPU?

Since Samsung plans to use AMD GPUs in its future chips, we don’t expect to see ARM’s new GPUs inside Exynos processors. MediaTek will most probably use them in its Dimensity processors next year. Smartphone chipsets based on ARM’s latest CPU and GPU could launch later this year or early next year.

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Phone ARMExynosExynos 2300Galaxy S23Galaxy S23 PlusGalaxy S23 UltraQualcomm
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