Android users: Have 64-bit Apple A7 envy? You’ll have to bite your lip for a year or more


The iPhone 5s that was announced just a few short days ago comes with a world’s first, a 64-bit chip. What does that even mean? Do you remember when 64-bit computers came out roughly 10 years ago, powered by the AMD Athlon 64? They were created so that computer makers could build machines that could handle more than 4GB of RAM among other benefits. Spend any decent money on a computer today, and chances are it’ll come with 8GB of RAM or even more.

So does that mean the iPhone 5s has 4GB of RAM? Not really, but it means that Apple is getting ready for 64-bit whenever it’ll become mainstream, which will happen by this time next year or early 2015. An article that’s floating around today from The Korea Times says Samsung is hard at work on a 64-bit chip for their own smartphones. This should come as no shock to anyone.

In an odd turn of events, it’s Apple who came out with something the world doesn’t really need yet, not Samsung, but again, Apple is just getting ready for the inevitable. By the time Samsung has a 64-bit Exynos and Qualcomm has the Snapdragon 1000 or whatever they end up calling it, Apple will be on their second generation 64-bit chip.

Circling back, this whole 64-bit thing isn’t going to matter for quite a while. When Samsung announces the Galaxy S5 in half a year, it’s not going to have 4GB of RAM. I can promise you that. The Galaxy S6 on the other hand, it’s practically guaranteed.

Note: This post was first posted on our sister site Android Beat.

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Categories: Android, Samsung

  • Pavliko

    PC’s could enlarge their RAM memory from 4GB to what ever, that was the success..
    I doubt Apple’s products will be capable of modifying

    • solidus

      Are u saying the performance increase of a 64bit chip through additional Ram is only possible if u are allowed to install the modules yourself?!

  • Sebastian Rasch

    +4GB RAM isn’t the only advantage of a 64 bit architecture albeit the biggest.

  • iphonel8rnoth8r

    No envy here. My device has thousands of hours of standby time. The evolution of ARM is big.LITTLE, not 64-bit. That’s, uh, well, slated for next year rightfully so. Apple jumped the gun not for performance reasons, but for security. None of the old 32-bit exploits/jailbreaks work on a 64-bit platform

    • Zangpakto

      Really because a 64bit processor with the correct SOFTWARE is superior to the 32bit equivalent.

      That is a fact, not an opinion, so yes performance will increase even without any other variables changing except the processor, except there are other variables, aren’t there?

      Also honestly, the tweaks that most people need are slowly being integrated into iOS, so why is jailbreaking the 5S so important to you? I mean for god sakes man, they haven’t even released or produced a working iOS 7 jailbreak for older devices!

      When and if that happens, then maybe to a small percent of users will your argument even hold valid due to the majority of jailbreakers are generally using cracked apps, and sure also the tweaks, but that isn’t the only reason.

      So in light of that, good job on Apples part, piracy is a crime and should indeed be stamped out without caring about other issues.

      Truth be told the scene did it to themselves, a company does not care about your modifying their OS or anything as you bought it already from them. However the people whose apps you can steal from hacking the device (Which is what JB actually is) is the issue. If piracy never occurred, there is a chance even that Apple would have let or even allowed the JB scene to thrive alongside.

      So the majority of users have only themselves to blame, you might not be one of them, I don’t know you, but most if not all people I’ve met who have a JB device have cracked apps.

      Also jumped the gun? You mean like releasing a decent touchscreen phone before everyone else thought was possible? Releasing a tablet when people kept saying they wouldn’t need it or it wouldn’t work and it will fail?

      Sure… Apple has “jumped the gun” and again is now leading the devices.

      Also I know certain sites have benchmarks etc, however did you know that samsung has had a legal issue wherein they actually falsify the data to what the device in fact does? Most their devices pick up on those sites and make all the chips run at full capacity, even though they do not run close to that in actual use. In fact they don’t ever run close to that the way they are programmed.

      Just to like, let you know and tell you to perhaps get off your high horse about your butt being hurt that you cannot jailbreak iOS 7 nor the new devices yet.

  • phonebrother

    The 64-bit label implies both 64-bit addressing AND 64-bit processing.
    While it is true that a >32-bit address to overcome the 4GB memory limit has no advantage at all for now, 64-bit processing could boost speed even when the binary code hasn’t change, thanks to the double-sized ALU (arithmetic unit). 64-bit processing will bring in more registers, extending registers, and new instructions for the CPU. With code optimizations, the speed boost could be considerable.

    On desktop PC, the 64-bit took 10 years to pickup, because the operating system isn’t going to change by users. The old system just fade and die with time. It is a very much different case for iOS. The 64-bit firmware for iphone 5S is built solely for it. It kicks into action on day 1. The tighter, faster code for the core could run much faster if carefully optimized. There is no need to “wait” for the mainstream.

    • Ibrahim Daher

      I agree :)

  • Tom

    Last I heard, Android’s OS isn’t even compatible with 64 bit chips so they still need to wait until the OS is capable of handling both 32 and 64 bit.

  • bcsc

    If apple is so interested in having these phones ready for ‘The future’, why have they neglected NFC?

    • Ahmad

      1. NFC’s doesn’t have finished standards yet (remember LTE support)
      2. NFC increases battery consumption, will add when battery boost is done after point 1
      3. NFC adoption by operators in Major Markets is still a shy attempt at best

      • bcsc

        I have no argument against #1, but for number 2. If you don’t need NFC, toggle it off. Zero battery consumption. And for number 3, Major transit systems from Paris, Vancouver Taipei, and I’m sure many more places that I have not experienced first hand have NFC payment options. Visa uses NFC in their cards. World wide hotel chains use it for Access cards. It has been adopted and is a technology that will grow at a very fast rate. Even here in Canada (Where absolutely nothing happens first or fast) Rogers wireless is using the Tech to create mobile payment platforms for the entire country. An iPhone 5s would be more useful to consumers in 2 years than an iPhone 5s with a 64-bit chip.

        • Ahmad

          I certainly not only agree with you that a user can be toggled off when not needed, not only that, an NFC chip consumes a tiny amount of power compared to all other radios, yet imho Apple would prefer to keep it on all the time: imagine you are entering the metro station, you reach the gate, open your iphone, unlock it, toggle NFC on, use gate. vs nfc is already on; use gate directly (almost 100% no need to even switch on phone display, tho maybe a notification would pop up once payment is done) . this requires NFC on all the time, imagine if 10 iphone users with NFC iphones had to go through the process and toggle NFC on in the metro gate queues while getting out of the stations…thats a queuing logistical nightmare my friend, even with ready oyster cards in london queues occur regularly at gates. for Apple, I believe they would think of NFC as “always on” – if supported by the SIM card of course, that is, hence the battery consumption dilemma, not to mention other NFC payment systems in Rest. and others (imagine the same queue at Starbucks/Tim H. for you in mornings) , around the home (indoor location awareness, object info, etc). again, NFC for apple would be seen as always on.

          Another thing, even if 20 major operators world wide have NFC systems, that wouldn’t mean apple would provide it; really the NFC market is still fragmented in regards to who links what and who manages what at the back end, Apple usually would wait till a clearer more unified systems are in place , again LTE

          Personally, I would have loved to have an NFC in my iPhone, basically I sell NFC for a living and Apple having it in its new iphone would have almost 10 folds multiplied our business worldwide!

  • curious

    you are talking about 4GB of RAM when there is still 1GB of RAM in the iPhone! Come on Apple and the Author! Dont be an iSheep…

    • Phonebrother

      Most android phone today has 1GB ram, and 2GB for the high end models.

      But don’t get envy at all.

      My old pal iPhone 4S has only 512MB ram, but it definitely out-perform my new Note 2, which has 2GB, in normal daily usage. Task manager shows an over 60% usage even with no apps is open. (that’s 1GB already) I can understand why facebook, whtsapp, dropbox, tango, Gmail, sits there all the time, to check for new message, I assume. But why S.Note? Play store? Camera? Maps? and some legit apps from tv, banks, and even games. I see no apparent reasons. The strange thing is, you can kill it, memory usage drops to 40-50%, and many app will be reloaded later. at a later time, they will rise back up to 60%.
      Thanks to the “no control” of apps on google’s play market. You can write and post. It will be on market in hours. Programmers can do whatever they want. And android 4’s memory manager need some re-work. IMO.
      Out of curiosity, I took my collegea’s S3, which sold quite well but only has 1GB ram, and see how it’s doing. Not to my surprise, task manager shows a 80%-90% usage when no apps open. When you open some apps, it becomes sluggish.

      bigger is better? Definitely not in this case.
      iPhone 4s’s 512MB may be a bit tight if running iOS7, but i5’s 1GB is still a winner when comparing 2GB on Android Phones.

      • curious

        well put. true. i also think android needs better control over its app store. also better memory management. i had that problem with s3 and i changed it. i think it should kill the apps if not used for like one hour or something.

  • Slick

    by the rate android phone’s are going at specs I wouldn’t be surprise if we get 4 gig ram phone next year not that we need it or do we???

  • Blackwell

    Unless android release a new version of android. The newly smartphone or tablet will still run on a 32 bit load. Keep bluffing with all these new processors! And let’s see what will be the outcome