The first iPhone 5 reviews have lifted, confirming the leaked Geekbench data we saw in our earlier post. Apple's A6 appears to feature two custom ARM cores running at up to 1GHz. A new datapoint comes courtesy of our own Brian Klug who's currently visiting LG in Seoul, South Korea. He ran into Vincent Nguyen of Slashgear fame, who kindly let him run SunSpider 0.9.1 on Vincent's iPhone 5 review sample. The score? 914.7ms.

SunSpider is quickly outlasting its welcome as a smartphone benchmark, but it does do a great job of highlighting issues with the Cortex A9's memory interface. Intel originally hinted at issues in the A9's memory interface as being why Atom was able to so easily outperform other ARM based SoCs in SunSpider. As we surmised in our A6 Geekbench post, it looks like Apple specifically targeted improvements in the memory subsystem when designing the A6's CPU cores. The result is the fastest SunSpider test we've ever recorded on a smartphone - faster even than Intel's Atom Z2460.

This doesn't tell us much about the A6's architecture other than it's likely got a better cache/memory interface than ARM's Cortex A9. What we really need is for someone to port SPECint to iOS...

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  • BSMonitor - Wednesday, September 19, 2012 - link

    And the Atom SoC in these is how old?? I hold to Intel taking most of this market by 2014. 14/22nm Atoms on 450mm wafers... Can someone do the math? That's a LOT of smart phone CPU's.. They'll be able to cut the legs out of any ARM maker, price wise and now they have Google making phones WITH them.

    Intel does one other thing well... Make partners.
  • extide - Wednesday, September 19, 2012 - link

    I agree, if anything, the next few years are going to be HELLA fun to watch. Intel is going to put the full force of chipzilla behind getting into this market.... and I believe they will get into it. Atom2 will be quite a significantly different CPU, and it will have a manufacturing process advantage vs any ARM chips right out of the gate. This is a good thing though, competition gets us consumers faster phones for less money.
  • Z3ra7uL - Wednesday, September 19, 2012 - link

    Try running that benchmark on the Puffin browser on android - yep, that's right, you'll get incredible results. I on my dual core Krait(stock rom, no root) got 400 sth points, so if we consider it a valid speed test it would mean that it is twice as fast as the A6, which i think it is not. Soooo as far as I am concerned this comparison shows nothing.

    On the stock android browser I got 1100 sth :)
    P.S. 2
    I have nothing against the article or this website whatsoever, I am only pointing that those results are quite misleading.
  • doobydoo - Wednesday, September 19, 2012 - link

    All you're doing is showing why using stock browser is important.

    It doesn't make the benchmark any less relevant.
  • blueseeker - Wednesday, September 19, 2012 - link

    Nope. All you're doing is showing how limited actually is iOS having only one browser engine.
  • doobydoo - Wednesday, September 19, 2012 - link

    So limited because it dominates the stock benchmark?

    Or is that because you are unfamiliar with the fact that Chrome, Dolphin, Opera, Atomic, Mercury, Photon, Switch, Webout, Cloudbrowse, Knowtilus Pro, Puffin, Flash Browser and Sky Fire are all available on iOS?
  • dysonlu - Wednesday, September 19, 2012 - link

    Isn't Apple forcing all 3rd-party browsers to use the same slow engine: UIWebView?

    I think that's what blueseeker meant.
  • Z3ra7uL - Wednesday, September 19, 2012 - link

    So do you know that stock android is not the same as stock iOS, which makes it the same thing as comparing Chrome and Dolphin on iOS, and that is as you mentioned irrelevant.
    The score doesn't reflect the hardware, it just compares a single component of a specific browser to the same component on a different browser.

    I just ran it on my second gen 4,5GHz Intel i5 on Firefox and got 115ms, just for laughs and giggles.
  • doobydoo - Thursday, September 20, 2012 - link

    I don't think comparing stock for stock is irrelevant just because the browser can affect the score. It's a stock comparison with the stock browser.

    It does reflect the hardware - it just also reflects the software. It's a good real world benchmark.

    @dysonlu - I just ran the Sunspider test on Puffin on an iPhone 4 on iOS 6 and scored 523.5 ms - so it's not being forced to use the same 'slow engine'. Safari achieves 3,000 ms.

    Puffin must have some kind of short-circuit on all devices which makes the result look more impressive than real world performance is - so we shouldn't use it as a comparison.
  • thunng8 - Thursday, September 20, 2012 - link

    Puffin web browser runs Javascript on its own server, so is not a good comparison (not on client machine). Quite an interesting technology. Also allows viewing of flash on iOS.

    According to it website, the new ipad running puffin turns in a score of 325ms om sunspider

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