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Samsung to fire up all eight cores at once in revised Exynos 5 Octa processor

Exynos 5 Octa 5420
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Samsung’s Exynos 5 Octa processor has made headlines ever since it was introduced earlier this year, as it’s one of the few mobile chips to come with eight cores. However, the eight-core tag was a big cheeky, as it only ever used four of them at one time, supposedly making it more power-efficient than a quad-core chip. All very clever, but power-hungry smartphone fans did feel a bit cheated.

Not to worry, as Samsung has announced all this will change in a revised version of the Exynos 5 Octa later on this year. The very techy press release talks about Heterogeneous Multi-Processing, a system which overrides any restrictions and allows each processor core to be turned on and off at any time. Samsung will add HMP to the next version of the Exynos 5 Octa, enabling it to run all eight of its cores at the same time.

The Exynos 5 Octa is built using ARM’s big.LITTLE technology, and consists of a quad-core Cortex A15 processor, and a quad-core Cortex A7. The former chip takes care of the high intensity tasks, while the latter smaller chip deals with the simple stuff, all in the most energy efficient way possible. At the end of July, Samsung made some changes to the processor, now known as the Exynos 5420, by upgrading the Cortex A15 to 1.8GHz and the A7 to 1.3GHz, plus it improved the graphics processor too.

Eight-core Exynos chips with HMP will be ready for sale sometime after October. Samsung announced the 3G version of the Galaxy Note 3 will be powered by the Exynos 5 Octa processor in some countries around the world, however it’s not clear if it will ever have the HMP technology. If it doesn’t, when will Samsung announced a device with a true eight-core Exynos 5 Octa processor, and what will it be?

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Andy Boxall
Andy is a Senior Writer at Digital Trends, where he concentrates on mobile technology, a subject he has written about for…
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