Video explains the working of big.LITTLE configuration

Samsung Galaxy S IV is the most anticipated smartphone that will be launched in a few months. We expect a lot from this phone because it is the sequel of the flagship Galaxy S III device, which is still a hot product. With so many other manufacturers launching their flagship phones with high end internal hardware, Samsung will surely put in a great set up in this upcoming device.

We have had many rumors about the S IV, however, there are no official words from Samsung. The South Korean technology giant had previously showcased Exynos 5 Octa processor, which is an 8 core processor that is built using ARM’s big.LITTLE architecture, and there’s a possibility that this particular processor may make its way inside the upcoming flagship. It may be an 8 core processor or may have lesser cores, but most probably it will be based on big.LITTLE set up itself as only that will make the device stand out of the flagship smartphone crowd, and will also promise outstanding performance at the same time.

If you don’t know what ARM’s big.LITTLE architecture is, it is a setup in which the processor is made out of Cortex A15 cores along with Cortex A7 cores. The A15 cores are called as ‘big’ cores because they are powerful and can deal with resource hungry processes easily, but at the same time the A15 cores are also power hungry. We obviously don’t need A15 cores running the non-demanding tasks, and for such tasks there are the A7 cores, also known as ‘LITTLE’ cores because they are very power efficient, but provide mediocre performance.

In order to enlighten general public on how exactly the big.LITTLE setup works in the octo-core chip, Samsung has posted a video which explains the working of this chip. In the video, though not the 8 core chip is shown working, but it does explain the working. This particular setup is made out of two A15 cores and three A7s with no graphical accelerator shown running the Android system. You can see how the MP scheduler correctly assigns each task to the right core depending on its intensity, and it is impressive.

Cortex A15 cores deliver great performance, but they are power hungry and just can’t be used alone on a smartphone due to limitations in the battery size. Using the A15 cores in conjunction with A7 cores does make sense. The A7 cores deliver mediocre performance, but are able to do that while consuming very low power. The Exynos 5 Octa processor comes with 4 cores of A15 and 4 cores of A7, which brings the total to 8. This particular processor which was showcased at the CES has been criticized on the basis that it isn’t a true 8 core processor because either of the 4 cores will be running at any given time, thus the maximum number of active cores are just 4. What are your thoughts on Exynos 5 and ARM’s big.LITTLE architecture? Let us know using the comment form below.

Source: Samsung