ARM wants to power the next-gen VR-ready smartphones with new chips

oculus facebook 360 pictures gear vr news lifestyle image 7
ARM has seen the future of smartphones and believes with all certainty that it will involve virtual reality. That’s why its new central processor and graphics processor, shown off at Computex 2016, are built to offer power and efficiency in compact packages, in order to bring as many people into VR as possible.

The first chip it has at the stands this year is the Cortex-A73, an evolution of its A72 mobile processor, that brings with it a number of impressive improvements. For starters, it’s 30 percent more powerful right off of the bat, which is far more of an improvement between generations than your average desktop processor.

Perhaps more importantly though, it’s also 30 percent more efficient, which should help keep smartphones running for longer between charges. The A73 is also built on a 10nm FinFET design, making it the smallest chip ARM has ever put out there as well.

Related: ‘Project Arena’ isn’t just an amazing ‘Tron’ tribute, it could be VR’s first eSport

As big an improvement over its predecessor as the new mainstream processor is though, ARM’s new graphics chip is even more impressive.

Known as the Mali-G71, the graphics processing unit (GPU) is said to be 50 percent more capable than its last-generation equivalent and yet is 20 percent more energy efficient. To make it even less of an energy hog, the G71 can even be paired up with lower-powered GPUs and only brought to bear when needed (thanks Engadget).

The big VR focus with this hardware though is that the G71 is capable of outputting frames with just 4ms of latency, massively reducing the potential for nausea in a virtual environment. It’s also capable of outputting 4K resolutions at up to a 120Hz refresh rate, which again will really help make VR a comfortable experience for people.

The speed with which smartphones are developing and the fact that nearly everyone owns them, is why ARM is pushing hard for smartphone-based virtual reality. It believes that this is the first point where people will contact the new virtual medium, and when these chips eventually launch sometime in 2017, we may well see a lot of people powering their VR experiences with ARM processors.

Already we’re being told that ARM has over 100 partners interested in using the new hardware, suggesting that ARM may be set for a very positive next couple of years.

Mobile

5G phones make a lot of promises. Here’s what to really expect

There has been a lot of marketing copy expounding the potential benefits of 5G networks, but a lot less on the practical implications of 5G smartphones. There's a reason for that.
Emerging Tech

CES 2019 recap: All the trends, products, and gadgets you missed

CES 2019 didn’t just give us a taste of the future, it offered a five-course meal. From 8K and Micro LED televisions to smart toilets, the show delivered with all the amazing gadgetry you could ask for. Here’s a look at all the big…
Computing

2019 could be the year AMD has a full lineup of 7nm Radeon GPUs

AMD just came off the reveal of the worlds first consumer 7nm graphics card, but In a new interview, AMD's chief technology officer hints that 2019 could be the year where it has a full lineup of 7nm Radeon GPUs. 
Gaming

The Teslasuit could turn Black Mirror’s terrifying ‘Playtest’ into a reality

We spoke with Teslasuit co-founder Dimitri Mikhalchuk about VR gaming at CES 2019. With all its features, the future of the Teslasuit and virtual reality look bright. And it also sounds a bit like a Black Mirror episode.
Gaming

HTC brings two new headsets, a VR browser, and ‘Netflix for VR’ to CES 2019

HTC Vive made several new announcements to CES 2019, including two new headsets, a new subscription service, and a new user interface that completely transforms how applications are launched.
Photography

Camera records real-life scenes to design virtual worlds using a single device

Creating virtual reality worlds may get a bit easier in 2019 -- the Axis is a camera module that records a 180-degree depth map, allowing designers to reconstruct the scene for virtual or augmented reality.
Product Review

HTC puts eye-tracking tech in Vive Pro Eye to make next-gen VR hands-free

With the announcement of integrated eye tracking for the Vive Pro Eye, hands-free VR, less demanding high-quality experiences, and intuitive software, are all on the table.
Gaming

The Vive Pro Eye uses Tobii eye-tracking technology to make VR more lifelike

HTC revealed the Vive Pro Eye with eye-tracking support at its CES 2019 press conference on January 7. We now know that Tobii will be the company responsible for integrating the technology.
Computing

Oculus’ Quest is the headset that will make me (and you) a VR believer

Without excessive wires or complicated setup, and a price point that makes sense for tech that just isn't there yet, Oculus' upcoming standalone headset, the Quest, could bring VR mainstream.
Gaming

Dive headfirst into the best experiences available now on the Oculus Rift

The Oculus Rift brought back virtual reality and put a modern twist to it. Grab your Touch Controllers, put on your VR headset, and jump into the fun with some of the best Oculus Rift games available now.
Gaming

The best VR headsets at CES 2019 could bring the technology to the mainstream

While there weren't a ton of new VR headset on display at CES 2019, the ones we saw led us to believe that VR could have a real moment soon, both from a gaming and business standpoint.
Gaming

These are the coolest virtual and augmented reality gadgets from CES 2019

CES 2019 had plenty of VR and AR gadgets on display, including headsets that completely change how you experience virtual reality, and some that don't even require a PC or a phone to run.
Gaming

These shoes let me stroll through ‘Skyrim,’ and I desperately want to go back

After being funded in just two hours on Kickstarter back in October 2018, Cybershoes has earned itself a place among the coolest VR walking and running tech. At CES 2019, we got to try them out and they live up to the hype.