Qualcomm Marketing Executive Calls Apple's 64-Bit A7 Chip a 'Marketing Gimmick'

Qualcomm SnapdragonQualcomm chief marketing officer Anand Chandrasekher said Apple's 64-bit A7 processor, first introduced in the iPhone 5s, is a "marketing gimmick" and there is "zero benefit" to the consumer from the chip, according to an interview with Techworld.

64-bit ARMv8 processors were first introduced back in 2011, though Apple's A7 is the first 64-bit ARM chip to be released commercially.

Last week, Algoriddim claimed the A7 chip in the iPhone 5s allowed for 2-4 times faster processing for some tasks related to real-time audio and video production.

"I know there's a lot of noise because Apple did [64-bit] on their A7," said Anand Chandrasekher, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at Qualcomm, in an interview. "I think they are doing a marketing gimmick. There's zero benefit a consumer gets from that."

A benefit of 64-bit is more memory addressability, but that is not relevant in today's smartphones or tablets, Chandrasekher said. The iPhone 5s has only 1GB of DRAM.

"Predominantly... you need it 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," said Chandrasekher, who previously ran Intel's mobile platforms group.

Chandrasekher goes on to say that Qualcomm is developing a 64-bit chip for use in mobile applications, but that the chip will be more beneficial from engineering efficiency and chip design standpoints, rather than as a consumer-driven feature.

Countering Chandrasekher's claims, other examinations have shown significant improvements for a variety of tasks on the A7 in 64-bit versus 32-bit mode. Mike Ash performed a fairly technical dive (via Daring Fireball) into the A7, concluding that the addition of 64-bit is a "welcome addition" and that it came sooner than expected.

The "64-bit" A7 is not just a marketing gimmick, but neither is it an amazing breakthrough that enables a new class of applications. The truth, as happens often, lies in between.

The simple fact of moving to 64-bit does little. It makes for slightly faster computations in some cases, somewhat higher memory usage for most programs, and makes certain programming techniques more viable. Overall, it's not hugely significant.

[…]

ARM64 is a welcome addition to Apple's hardware. We all knew it would happen eventually, but few expected it this soon. It's here now, and it's great.

Top Rated Comments

pk7 Avatar
139 months ago
Someone sounds insecure.

Despite the cold, hard facts that 64-bit actually helps.

Sorry the 1.3 GHz dual core A7 beats your precious 2.3 GHz quad core Snapdragon 800. :p
Score: 83 Votes (Like | Disagree)
lunarworks Avatar
139 months ago
So he says the 64-bit is a marketing gimmick, and then admits they're also working on a 64-bit mobile chipset.

Marketing doublespeak at its finest.
Score: 55 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dlmart2 Avatar
139 months ago
lol hate much?
Score: 53 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Squilly Avatar
139 months ago
I don't think it's a marketing gimmick. Developers have proven it to be better than 32 bit. I haven't seen other manufacturers step up to the plate to create a 64bit chip either. Relax. Looks like Qualcomm is full of haters too.
Score: 41 Votes (Like | Disagree)
decimortis Avatar
139 months ago
I can imagine how this would have went if it'd come to a competitor first.

"ZOMG Apple's still using 32-bit chips. Who wants to buy old tech? Lolz1"

D.
Score: 40 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ouimetnick Avatar
139 months ago
You jelly bro?
Score: 38 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iOS 17

iOS 17.5 Bug May Also Resurface Deleted Photos on Wiped, Sold Devices [Updated]

Friday May 17, 2024 12:24 pm PDT by
A bug in iOS 17.5 is apparently causing photos that have been deleted to reappear, and the issue seems to impact even iPhones and iPads that have been erased and sold off to other people. A Reddit user wiped an iPad following Apple's guidelines in September of 2023 before selling it off to a friend. That friend updated the iPad to iPadOS 17.5 this week, and began seeing the Reddit user's old ...
iphone se 4 modified flag edges

When to Expect the Next iPhone SE to Launch

Friday May 17, 2024 2:03 pm PDT by
It has been over two years since Apple released the third-generation iPhone SE, and rumors continue to surface about a new model. The latest word comes from The Information, which today reported that Apple plans to release a new iPhone SE with a design similar to the standard iPhone 14 in the spring of 2025. If this rumor is accurate, the iPhone SE would finally gain Face ID and a notch...
oled m4 ipad pro grainy display reports

OLED iPad Pro Users Report 'Grainy' Displays, But It May Not Be a Defect

Friday May 17, 2024 5:57 am PDT by
Some new M4 iPad Pro models are exhibiting a visible static grain pattern across the OLED display, according to several user reports on Reddit (1, 2, 3) and the MacRumors Forums. Image credit: MacRumors user bk215 Users who see the grain generally report that it is most noticeable in dark environments with the display set at a low to medium brightness while viewing content with gray or muted...
iOS 17

Troubling iOS 17.5 Bug Reportedly Resurfacing Old Deleted Photos

Wednesday May 15, 2024 5:29 am PDT by
There are concerning reports on Reddit that Apple's latest iOS 17.5 update has introduced a bug that causes old photos that were deleted – in some cases years ago – to reappear in users' photo libraries. After updating their iPhone, one user said they were shocked to find old NSFW photos that they deleted in 2021 suddenly showing up in photos marked as recently uploaded to iCloud. Other...
Delta Hands On Feature

iPhone Emulators on the App Store: Game Boy, N64, PS1, PSP, and More

Thursday May 16, 2024 12:45 pm PDT by
In April, Apple updated its guidelines to allow retro game emulators on the App Store, and several popular emulators have already been released. The emulators released so far allow iPhone users to play games released for older consoles from Nintendo, Sony, SEGA, Atari, and others. A list of some popular emulators available on the App Store so far follows. Released Delta Delta is...
iphone 15 pro max vs iphone 16 pro max

iPhone 16 Pro Max Looks This Much Bigger Beside iPhone 15 Pro Max

Thursday May 16, 2024 4:51 am PDT by
This year's upcoming iPhone 16 Pro Max is expected to get a boost in overall size from 6.7-inches to 6.9-inches, and a new image gives us a good idea of how the current iPhone 15 Pro Max compares to what could be Apple's largest ever iPhone. The image above, posted on X by ZONEofTECH, shows a dummy model representing the ‌iPhone 16 Pro‌ Max alongside an actual iPhone 15 Pro Max. Dummy...