Samsung Licenses PowerVR SGX MP from Imagination Technologiesby Anand Lal Shimpi on November 10, 2011 7:52 AM EST
Samsung is a bit of a mobile GPU conoisseur it seems. Its previous flagship, Hummingbird, used a PowerVR SGX 540 GPU. Its most recent high-end SoC, the Exynos 4210, uses an ARM Mali-400 GPU. Even more recently Samsung was listed on ARM's Mali-T658 deck, indicating its continued support for ARM based GPUs. Samsung is continuing to play both sides of the field though with today's announcement of licensing an Imagination Technologies PowerVR SGX MP core.
The SGX MP refers to ImgTec's Series 5XT cores, for example the PowerVR SGX 543MP2 used in Apple's A5. There are more options than just the 543 MP2, the SGX MP license could refer to another 543 configuration, an SGX 544MP1-16 or an SGX 554MP1-16.
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Zapa - Thursday, November 10, 2011 - linkI've just had an exciting conversation with a good friend of mine about the obsolescence of portable gaming consoles. He states that no matter the time from its launch, PSP will be always better than a mobile device for gaming due to its specialization. Now with this license Samsung would be able to build a mobile device with exactly the same brain as PSP Vita (ARM Cortex A9 + PowerVR SGX 543).
Now where this bring us to is for me evident. The PSP business is turning obsolete as in few time its device are overtaken by new devices which update more frequently. It is only a matter of time that game developers begin to develop versions of PSP games for mobile devices.
Formul - Thursday, November 10, 2011 - linkwith iPad 2 and iPhone 4S already on the market with MP2 version, this can be a serious blow to nVidia's Tegra effort
although it is strange that Sony itself is not using it in their own Android phones
Exodite - Thursday, November 10, 2011 - linkSony doesn't have a phone division.
I realize that they've shown intention of purchasing Ericsson's half of SE but as of right now, and certainly when the current SE phones were in development, SE was and is a stand-alone company.
Also, as far as their hardware/software development is concerned it's far more old Ericsson than Sony.
Zok - Thursday, November 10, 2011 - linkActually, they did... two weeks ago:
Guspaz - Thursday, November 10, 2011 - linkThey announced their intention two weeks ago. They won't actually buy the company for another two or three months, and they're an independent company until then. Even after then, there's going to be a transition period before they can really start working on stuff, and then it'll probably be a few years before you see the results of that.
Zapa - Friday, November 11, 2011 - linkBesides that... you must have in mind that adopting tegra would be against their console business
alent1234 - Thursday, November 10, 2011 - linksony and nintendo were dumb for not turning their mobile consoles into phones or generic use devices.
I know the games are better than almost everything in the app store, but at $40 a pop that's too rich for me.
Lyrick_ - Thursday, November 10, 2011 - linkFortunately for the gaming industry and its consumers, a line has been drawn between the shovelware released on iOS/Andriod platforms and the high budget experiences provided on dedicated gaming hardware. The input lag alone disqualifies mobile devices and tablets from the traditional gaming spectrum.
prophet001 - Thursday, November 10, 2011 - linkCouldn't agree more
name99 - Thursday, November 10, 2011 - linkI don't think this is quite correct.
Trying to make a SINGLE device do everything is a sucker's game. And it's not necessary given the cost of modern electronics. There is no reason a hardcore gamer would not buy both a smartphone, to do smartphone things, and a portable game device. BUT
(a) this assumes that the dedicated game device IS actually better. Which means it has to have not only all the old-school gamer controls but also at least some of what people expect in modern devices, like a gyro and a way to sense 3D attitude.
(b) the economics has to work. If 95% of your previous customers were casual gamers, who are happy with what a phone offers, you have to keep prices low enough to still attract them. OR you have to get your design and manufacturing efficient enough that you can operate on way lower volumes.
The model is, eg, Kindle. Plenty of people with a smart phone are willing to pay $80 (or $120, or $250) for some variant of a Kindle because it both does a particular job better than the phone, and the price makes sense.
I honestly don't think Sony are capable of adapting to this new reality.
+ They appear to have no integrated design team that shares knowledge and experience learned across devices (re-use software for PS3 or phone in gaming device, share parts between phone and gaming device). So they can't and won't get their manufacturing price down.
+ They'll spend hours, weeks, years, in internal battles about how the gamer division can't add something to the game device because it will make either PS3 or the phone look bad in comparison.
+ And --- just like most companies --- they're unwilling to change prices to adapt to new reality.
So, how I expect this will play out is
- Sony will NOT do very well with their attempts at either a portable game machine or a gamer targeted phone.
- For a while all the energy will be in games for phones --- sorry if that's not what you want.
- At some point, some 3rd party unexpected company (Amazon? MS?) will release a dedicated portable gaming device based on Android or Win8 --- but with everything targeted at doing gaming right, not at trying to be a singing dancing swiss army knife machine. But to get there will require a whole lot of rethinking: rethinking both the fact that dedicated devices CAN do some things better than singing dancing swiss army knife machine; and rethinking the game pricing model (eg, maybe you pay a $20 subscription a month, play whatever game you like, and vendors get reimbursed by the total hours spent each month played on their game).
I can see Amazon doing this --- and thinking outside the box.
I could ?maybe? see MS doing this --- but they are so fossilized, so in love with forcing Windows (and the Windows UI) into places it doesn't belong --- and they're locked into the old X-Box business model --- that it could be really tough for them to change.