Rumor: iPhone 5's A7 chip to be much faster than A6; could use 64-bit processors

As we get closer to September 10th, the rumored date for the reveal of the next iPhone, there are new but unconfirmed reports about what will be inside Apple's iPhone 5S. Clayton Morris, one of the news anchors for the Fox News Channel, claims that the A7 chip inside the iPhone 5S will be 31 percent faster than the A6 chip inside the current iPhone 5.

Morris later posted another message on his Twitter account that claims the iPhone 5S could have an additional processor:

Another report from 9to5Mac claims that Apple has also been testing 64-bit processors for the A7, although they may or may not be put into the final product. If they are, the report claims that the 64-bit processors will make graphical effects on the iPhone 5S run smoother than previous iOS devices.

Previous rumors claim that the iPhone 5S could have a fingerprint sensor for better security and that Apple will sell the device with an optional gold color case in addition to its traditional white and black colors.

Source: Clayton Morris and 9to5Mac | Image via Weekly Ascii

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Gaara sama said,
To include a 64 bit architecture in the new iPhone would mean that all apps have to be recoded so it works on the system.

Wrong. No company in their right mind would ever go solo 64-bit. Apps will still work, and will only need recoding if they want to take advantage of 64-bit.

Improved battery time and a more polished IOS7 would make more sense to me than the jump to 64 bit. I own a phone from all the major 4 platforms for testing purposes. And I still have to say that the Windows Phone is the one to beat when it comes to low specs hardware to provide the same performance as the other OSes on a pure spec by spec basis. Let's see if this new iPhone changes the game again. I am still looking for some breakthroughs, like they did in 2007. But don't ask me what type of breakthrough, they have the billions to figure it out and I am not being paid to come up with that :-)

i very interested in the new iPhone now.
But the half baked criticism on Apple is getting too darn boring and annoying. iYawn big time on the above comments.

Hooray! 64-bit so they can have even more iOS fragmentation than they already do! (iOS is very different depending upon device it is on so yes, iOS is just as hideously fragmented as Android)

Nogib said,
Hooray! 64-bit so they can have even more iOS fragmentation than they already do! (iOS is very different depending upon device it is on so yes, iOS is just as hideously fragmented as Android)

Examples?

does any android phones run 64bit yet? how much you want to bet if apple indeed adds 64biy support android will soon follow. it is all about tighter security.

At this point it has nothing to do with security and is just a gimmick, something they'll probably make a big fuss about at the keynote like they invented the 64bit architecture or something. However it was bound to happen seeing as current devices are already on 2GB of RAM and next gen devices would have 3 maybe 4GB of RAM. It won't be long until they run out of addressable space and will have shift to 64bit architecture.

So uh, this might be my first apple product. What are the chances of getting this day one? suggestions? like how long will i have to arrive outside the doors like a little nerd.

auziez said,
So uh, this might be my first apple product. What are the chances of getting this day one? suggestions? like how long will i have to arrive outside the doors like a little nerd.
Order it online when pre-orders start.

A core for motion tracking? Will it make the sound from Aliens? If not no deal ;-)

(For those who can't tell sarcasm I know it means not that kind of motion tracker)

I'm doubting the 64-bit rumor. Although iOS may be able to be compiled to 64-bit as-is, all current apps would run in some sort of emulation mode. Although the performance penalty is usually small (compare to WoW64 on Windows), the performance benefit is also small for the kind of apps we're talking about here. Instagram or Flipboard won't benefit much from being 64-bit. A rendering farm or heavy duty movie encoding app will. And the only other reason I can see is to get the good old 4 GB limit out of the picture, but we aren't quite there yet? Especially not iOS, which typically needs less RAM than Android to do the same things with similar performance.

Northgrove said,
Although iOS may be able to be compiled to 64-bit as-is, all current apps would run in some sort of emulation mode.

This isn't Windows. 32 Bit apps on OS X don't run in "some sort of emulation mode, they run natively. They will also on iOS and developers will automatically compile their new apps and updates for 64 Bit, so all apps will at least in theory profit from this. Plus, iOS 8 might just drop 32 Bit support, so the transition will once again be complete - this is Apple, not Microsoft.

neo1988 said,

This isn't Windows. 32 Bit apps on OS X don't run in "some sort of emulation mode, they run natively. They will also on iOS and developers will automatically compile their new apps and updates for 64 Bit, so all apps will at least in theory profit from this. Plus, iOS 8 might just drop 32 Bit support, so the transition will once again be complete - this is Apple, not Microsoft.


Maybe you should look up why Windows emulates 32bit instead of running it native.
Because Windows its 32bit can use advantages of the 64bit 'host'. 32bit on a 64bit Windows is faster then 32bit on a 32bit Windows.
And if Apple will let it run natively on the chipset, it will not have any of the 64bit advantages while you stay on 32bit.

Also if it was up to Microsoft, XP would've been released 64bit only.

Don't really care, I simply explained how it works on OS X/iOS.

Nobody will "stay on 32 Bit". Submissions to the AppStore will require 64 Bit binaries and that's that.

Any update to an App will then make it a 64 Bit app.

Well, the app community is pretty strong on iOS so I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of 64-bit variants of apps started showing up. As for the colors the "champagne" color looks, at least in the photo, more like a silver with just a hint of gold. I kind of like it.

Too bad all the apps are 32bit so they will not benefit at all.. If true Apple will make a big deal of the 64bit thing while it makes 0% difference to anything but the OS, provided it is optimised for it, which it won't be until iOS8.

From what I know, the only difference between a 32bit and a 64bit processor is that the latter can address more than 4GB of RAM. So unless the new iPhone has at least that much RAM, a 64bit processor would be useless as would be any app written for 64bit as it is still limited to the same amount of RAM.

AsherGZ said,
From what I know, the only difference between a 32bit and a 64bit processor is that the latter can address more than 4GB of RAM..

Not really. Many applications that work with large datasets benefit from being able to split stuff into large segments to dump into the processor to work on.

I'm not so familiar with ARM's 32bit and 64bit differences.
But for X86, 64bit does not just increase the RAM limit from 3.9GB up to 16trillion GB.
It is also faster at processing information if this is natively done for 64bit just cause the pipeline of data it can process each CPU cycle is a lot bigger.
The more stuff moves to 64bit the better! Please make it happen. Barely anything takes proper advantage of 64bit processing (and multithreading).

64-bit processors are not more powerful per say, but just like they can address more total system memory, they can also access more memory per instruction. The limits very depending on datatype used, but in some cases a 32-bit datatype may require more than one instruction to what whatever the code is trying to do, but using a 64-bit datatype may allow the same thing to be done with a single instruction.

To be honest, 31% is a very typical performance bump.

A6 is a 32 nm SoC clocked at 1.3 GHz. If the 31% rumor is correct, then A7 is probably a 28 nm chip clocked at 1.7 GHz.

eddman said,
To be honest, 31% is a very typical performance bump.

A6 is a 32 nm SoC clocked at 1.3 GHz. If the 31% rumor is correct, then A7 is probably a 28 nm chip clocked at 1.7 GHz.

Yah I don't see a surprise here... this chip will probably still be slower than the latest snapdragon though.

Buttus said,
was the iphone 5 really that slow? i mean, with the same screen and apps, why the need for a faster cpu?
Don't bring logic into this conversation. People ignore that the cpu it has had always fit what it did. Apple upgrades the CPU as needed, not just for the sake of upgrading it. Android phones tend to have to be overpowered because the software bogs down the hardware as it isn't as optimized having such a wide hardware base.

ILikeTobacco said,
Don't bring logic into this conversation. People ignore that the cpu it has had always fit what it did. Apple upgrades the CPU as needed, not just for the sake of upgrading it. Android phones tend to have to be overpowered because the software bogs down the hardware as it isn't as optimized having such a wide hardware base.

aww, i like logic! so, you're saying that since apple is upgrading the cpu in the new phone, it was needed. so that means that the iphone 5 was too slow, so they now need to upgrade the cpu to make it faster? (i guess people didn't want to admit that the iphone 5 was slow? didn't hear many complaints anyways)

ILikeTobacco said,
You do know a new OS is coming out right? Stop cherry picking.

oh ok, so the new os will be slow on the older phones...

Probably. People expecting new and/or more code to run on an older processor and it not bug down baffle me. It is just business as usual so not sure what you are getting at?

nothing really, just wondering out loud (?) about why they'd upgrade the cpu now and now just wait until the new phone comes out... i figure they'd released a new phone with a better cpu along with the next OS (not the one that's in beta now)

ILikeTobacco said,
Don't bring logic into this conversation. People ignore that the cpu it has had always fit what it did. Apple upgrades the CPU as needed, not just for the sake of upgrading it. Android phones tend to have to be overpowered because the software bogs down the hardware as it isn't as optimized having such a wide hardware base.
What you said about Android is false. The reason Android devices keep getting huge speed bump is speed is the only trump card when you have an OS on more than one brand. Apple has no one else using iOS...if they did...if you could get a Samsung phone with Quadcore, would you buy an iPhone with Dualcore?

More features and capabilities, yes do need more power. But the latest Android version runs on a Galaxy S II which is way less spec'd vs an iPhone 5 and yet, it is buttery smooth.

Buttus said,
was the iphone 5 really that slow? i mean, with the same screen and apps, why the need for a faster cpu?

Aren't trains fast enough already? Why develop faster ones?
Aren't 3tb harddrives big enough already? Why develop bigger ones?

Your logic doesn't work.

onionjuice said,

Aren't trains fast enough already? Why develop faster ones?
Aren't 3tb harddrives big enough already? Why develop bigger ones?
Your logic doesn't work.

wait, you missed my point. they're putting a faster processor in basically the same phone as the iphone 5, which doesn't need a faster processor.

a faster train or bigger hd gives you a benefit, a faster processor in the same phone doesn't give you any benefit. the apps run full speed already, everything runs fine with the old cpu.

Buttus said,

wait, you missed my point. they're putting a faster processor in basically the same phone as the iphone 5, which doesn't need a faster processor.

a faster train or bigger hd gives you a benefit, a faster processor in the same phone doesn't give you any benefit. the apps run full speed already, everything runs fine with the old cpu.

Actually yes just like a faster train giving you a benefit, a faster processor will enable you to run more demanding apps. Who knows if they upped the res to 720 or 1080p ? I know a lot of apps on the app store that WILL take advantage of the new CPU. One example is photoshop.

No, the OS itself will not run any faster but there are apps that can use the extra juice and also a faster will processor will unlock more possibilities that devs / Apple can do, especially with Siri.

Buttus said,

wait, you missed my point. they're putting a faster processor in basically the same phone as the iphone 5, which doesn't need a faster processor.

a faster train or bigger hd gives you a benefit, a faster processor in the same phone doesn't give you any benefit. the apps run full speed already, everything runs fine with the old cpu.

But they need more power to handle the additional tasks multi-tasking will need.

Relax. iYawn because the end user is more interested in increased battery life for the phone to be able to last more than 6 hours rather than a useless speed bump. Last time I checked iPhone 5's battery left much to be desired.

Agreed they keep making this phone slimmer and faster for no good reason. How many ppl wouldn't have gone for a new iPhone the size of the iPhone 4 but with 3 days or a week of battery life instead of it being slimmer?

Rudy said,
Because Android is coming out with such ground breaking features lately /s
No it isn't at least not from Google. Samsung is doing well with them though. The difference is the features don't have to be ground breaking, they simply need to be available. On iOS they aren't.

Rudy said,
Because Android is coming out with such ground breaking features lately /s

What does Android have to do with Apple making a faster processor?
Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 will be more than 30% faster than the A7 if the news that the A7 is 30% faster than the A6 is correct.