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Thread: Intel Claims Android Does Not Use Multi-Core Processors Effectively

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    #1

    Intel Claims Android Does Not Use Multi-Core Processors Effectively


    Mike Bell, General Manager of Intel's Mobile and Communications Group, recently made the claim that Android does not utilize multicore processors effectively, and that in some cases the use of multicores is actually slower than a single core. Here is a series of quotes from Mr. Bell,

    "If you are in a non-power constrained case, I think multiple cores make a lot of sense because you can run the cores full out, you can actually heavily load them and/or if the operating system has a good thread scheduler. A lot of stuff we are dealing with, thread scheduling and thread affinity, isn't there yet and on top of that, largely when the operating system goes to do a single task, a lot of other stuff stops. So as we move to multiple cores, we're actually putting a lot of investment into software to fix the scheduler and fix the threading so if we do multi-core products it actually takes advantage of it."

    "If you take a look at a lot of handsets on the market, when you turn on the second core or having the second core there [on die], the [current] leakage is high enough and their power threshold is low enough because of the size of the case that it isn't entirely clear you get much of a benefit to turning the second core on. We ran our own numbers and [in] some of the use cases we've seen, having a second core is actually a detriment, because of the way some of the people have not implemented their thread scheduling."

    "I've taken a look at the multiple core implementations in the market, and frankly, in a thermal and/or power constrained environment - what has been implemented - it isn't obvious to me you really get the advantage for the size and the cost of what's going into that part. The way it's implemented right now, Android does not make as effective use of multiple cores as it could, and I think - frankly - some of this work could be done by the vendors who create the SoCs, but they just haven't bothered to do it."

    "Right now the lack of software effort by some of the folks who have done their hardware implementation is a bigger disadvantage than anything else."
    What do you guys think of his comments? Does he have a point, or is he simply drawing a line in the sand trying to puff up Intel's new smartphone chips entering the market?

    Thanks for the tip, jntdroid!

    Source: TheInquirer.net
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    #2
    They're correct, pre-ICS doesn't really support multi core at all - and ICS is just the beginning. It's up to app developers as well, to make their apps use multiple threads efficiently. IMHO, there is truly no need for quad core devices at this point, dual core are barely used.

    I'd rather have a device with a high clocked (2GHz+) single core processor, myself.

    There is a reason the Atom phone demonstrated performs so well.

    EDIT: IMHO, the only thing multiple cores are good for at this point (in the cell phone world) are benchmark scores.
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    #3
    I personally don't know a ton about chips, but its been being said for some time that android hasn't been really utilizing the second core. I thought ICS was supposed to start bringing the second core into use??? Idk.

    One thing I do know, Intel chips are very good chips. I firmly believe that the use of Intel chips will be a game changer, their development is outstanding. I personally believe that we will be seeing faster, smarter, more efficient devices that are going to be able to do far more than they do now, And i mean in the next 1.5 - 4 years.

    Just my opinion

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    #4
    This is probably the reason why WP7 devices don't do dual core.

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    It was the same way with earlier versions of Windows, when multi-CPU first became available. At that point, even the reviewers noted that the additional computing power was nice and looked good on benchmarks, but the OS was not ready to take advantage of it.

    It's just early in the game for multi-core processors, and it will take awhile for the OSes to catch up. And of course, I don't discount there being a small amount of puffery on Intel's part either...not that they've ever done it in the past to promote a new chip.
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    it seems to me that intel is suggesting that android doesn't properly take advantage of multi-core SoC's, but it could be improved if the software companies started to work with the SoC manufacturers. intel is also suggesting that if their chips are used than they'll work with the software engineers (unlike the "other" guys who haven't "bothered") to optimize/improve the software. this would be a selling point for smartphone manufacturers. in the end, intel's entry into the smartphone market is a win/win for everyone. more competition, lower prices and more choices.
    Last edited by Lucas5; 06-11-2012 at 06:01 PM.
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    IMHO Intel is the chip king. They have the equipment and experience to do what it takes. For a long time software has been slow to catch up to multi core chips. For me to be able to fully load (100%) all four cores of my four watercooled systems, I have to run a Computational Chemistry program doing Cancer and Aids research. But dealing with the heat of these monsters at 100% load and 130w TDP your cooling had better be able to push the envelope of heat transfer.
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    intel is absolutely right. We haven't been given a whole lot that optimizes the dual-core CPUs as it is. Now they're already pushing the quad-cores. Everybody is in a race to have the baddest hardware instead of the most efficient phone. It'll all catch up soon though
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    #9
    Here is an example of how fast and smooth the Intel Chip is
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    #10
    Another one
    Last edited by cybertec69; 06-12-2012 at 08:09 AM.
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