iPhone 5s promo (A7 chip closeup 002)

In a recent interview with Techworld, Qualcomm’s chief marketing officer Anand Chandrasekher told the publication that he thinks that Apple’s 64-bit A7 processor is just a ‘marketing gimmick’ and that it adds ‘zero benefit’ for the customer.

The executive’s remarks follow several weeks of discussion on the processor, which is the first 64-bit chip to land in a smartphone, from all corners of the tech world. Here’s why he thinks it’s more of a marketing stunt than a technical enhancement…

From Techworld’s report (via MacRumors):

“I know there’s a lot of noise because Apple did [64-bit] on their A7,” said Anand Chandrasekher, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at Qualcomm, in an interview. “I think they are doing a marketing gimmick. There’s zero benefit a consumer gets from that.”

A benefit of 64-bit is more memory addressability, but that is not relevant in today’s smartphones or tablets, Chandrasekher said. The iPhone 5s has only 1GB of DRAM.

“Predominantly… you need it for memory addressability beyond 4GB. That’s it. You don’t really need it for performance, and the kinds of applications that 64-bit get used in mostly are large, server-class applications,” said Chandrasekher, who previously ran Intel’s mobile platforms group.”

While there’s a lot of folks that agree with Chandrasekher, there’s also many who don’t. For example, in the latest DJay update, Algoriddim claims the A7 chip in the iPhone 5s allows for 2-4 times faster processing for some production tasks.

A7 floorplan (Chipworks 001)Inside the A7 via Chipworks

And then there’s developer Mike Ash, who recently did some serious digging into the A7. He calls it a ‘welcome addition,’ saying that the chip does make for faster computations in some cases, and makes certain programming techniques more viable.

But the overall consensus on the A7, from both the praisers and the neigh-sayers, seems to be that the 64-bit chip doesn’t mean as much now as it will in a few years. So marketing gimmick or not, it’s nice to see Apple leading the way in this arena.

What do you think?

  • Jonathan

    Liar liar his pants are on fire..

    • Taf Khan

      Apple don’t lie.

      And Mr Chandersakher states you don’t really need 64bit processing for a smart phone, so does that mean Qualcomm won’t be designing a 64bit CPU?

      It sounds like It’s just Sour Grapes for Qualcomm.

  • TesticularFortitude

    What’s funny is they are working on their 64 bit chip as we speak. The entire industry will be 64 bit before 2015.

    • Taf Khan

      They just trying to take some shine off Apples achievement as everyone else is miles behind. Even aSamsung recognised what Apple has done and acknowledge that 64bit is the way to go for future Samsung devices, not sure what Qualcomm are going on about.

      • grumpyfuzz

        nice because there was a 64 bit android phone back in February 2012. you know, we all believe when Apple says they’re the first, just because it’s Apple!

      • Taf Khan

        What was the phone, source link?

      • grumpyfuzz

        just search huawei’s ascend D quad 64 bit

      • Taf Khan

        To quote knowyourmobile…

        “Huawei has implemented 64-bit memory into the Ascend D Quad as well, which will make the device faster and slicker. No one else, according to Yu, is using 64-bit memory yet.”

        So Huawei installed 64bit memory only?

        And Android will not support 64bit until the release of kit kat?

        Your claim does not stack up. It can’t be a 64bit Android phone if Android does not support 64bit?

      • grumpyfuzz

        It still introduced 64 bit in a phone… Whether it was or was not supported, doesn’t matter. Either way it was before Apple.

  • Cameron Nelms

    It’s not REALLY supposed to benefit you, it’s just a new chip that whe ever smartphones get more RAM, they will be able to use it

    • TesticularFortitude


      • Jonathan


      • Patrick


      • Top

      • CryptoCoin420


      • Guest


      • SkyFall

        Down Below

      • Moi

        Upsidedown nwodedispu

      • Jonathan


      • SkyFall

        Na na na na na na na
        Na na na na na na na

      • Jonathan

        It’s cause I’m Batman 😀
        btw, if you want a laugh, look up on youtube “Batman eats a hotdog” and chose the first one.

      • Cameron Nelms

        I am?

    • samdchuck

      It does benefit you, and it’s supposed to. Sure it’s a way to get developers and apps ready and compiled for 64-bit when RAM exceeds 4Gb. But unless you’re running photo/video editing software it won’t be that big of a deal, yeah it can keep more apps in memory reducing loading times etc. But anyway, there are a number of benefits you’ll get as soon as an app is 64 bit compiled, namely that the chip will use the new ARMv8 instruction set, which replaces the old one, which is filled with slow legacy junk (still available for non 64-bit compiled apps). That in itself will improve performance considerably. Also double the number of registers, in chip encryption. blablabla, going 64 bit has many advantages right now, in the near future (recompiled apps) and in the long run (RAM increases).

      • thetomthebomb

        The gold iphone is for Persians

  • i think they preparing for the next iPhone will be 4 gig ram

  • mehrab

    Has only 1gb ram yet outperforms all phones in memory ram tests in geekbench 3 along with the efficientcy of ios but whatever a pico of the everyday averagage android fan

    • Dan Yom

      Not lg g2. Quad core. It destroyes iphone. Since Jobs died, apple invented nothing. And they loosing to Samsung at the speed of light or faster.

      • Maxim∑

        Are you trolling?

        A7 chip was on par if not better than the snapdragon 800 @ 2.3Ghz. And in the x64 benchmark test it destroyed the LG G2. Make sure you do your research before next time.

        Also the single core test on the A7 nearly beat the QUAD core test on the GS4

      • Julio Cesar

        Are you sure?

        —GPU (Geekbench 3)

        Galaxy Note 3 (cheating*) ———— 2,986
        Sony Xperia Z1 ———————— 2,784
        Sony Xperia Z Ultra —————— 2,657
        iPhone 5s —————————— 2,554
        Galaxy Note 3 ———————— 2,487
        Nexus 5 ——————————- 2,282
        LG G2 ——————————— 2,243
        Galaxy S4 —————————- 1,850
        Nexus 4 —————————– 1,544

        *The Galaxy Note 3 have an code inside the TouchWiz that detects the benchmarks and overclocks the processor activating all the cores in a not safe process. If for some reason the benchmark take more than the time they expect the device could get on fire or explode.
        Outside the benchmarks, the device uses two pairs of cores:
        2x low consumption, 2x high performance
        The system switches between this two pairs of cores depending of what the app needs.
        Outside the benchmarks the device don’t let any app use all the cores at same time because of the heat and the instability.

        —GPU (GFXBench)

        iPhone 5s ————- 36.7 fps
        Nexus 5 ————— 35.0 fps
        Galaxy Note 3 ——– 26.0 fps
        Xperia Z1 ————- 24.1 fps
        LG G2 —————– 23.0 fps
        Xperia Z Ultra ——- 21.3 fps
        Nexus 4 ————– 20.7 fps
        iPhone 5 ————- 13.6 fps
        Lumia 820 ———– 8.4 fps
        Lumia 1020 ———- 6.1 fps

      • mehrab

        Z”s wont be better then the 5s cos they have a 3x as much laggier skin then touchwiz

      • Julio Cesar

        Maybe, it’s possible.
        These results show performance within apps, may not be so good outside of apps if they have not done pretty good optimizations.

      • mehrab

        Inside apps are worser my nexus 4 performs very well when navigatin and etc the problems start when i use apps or surf the net. Why? Lack of optimized apps

      • Julio Cesar

        Looks like more Android devices are cheating…

      • felixtaf

        Did you read the original post from Anandtech? Hilarious Title!!!!

      • mehrab

        How amusingly disturbingly horrible, poor consumers.

      • mehrab

        Since the experia z”s are cheating im sure apples on top of geekbench
        The 5s won most cpu gpu web page rendering benchmarks tho

      • Julio Cesar


      • grumpyfuzz

        What? The Nexus 5 hasn’t even been announced… Such a legit comment.

      • Julio Cesar

        Sorry, looks like it’s even worse.

        Geekbench 3:
        Nexus 5 ————— 23.1 fps
        http : / / goo. gl/iZ6Mdn

        Nexus 5 ————— 1,614
        http : / / goo. gl/ZoUzty

        The results are on the official page of the benchmarks, believe or not.

      • grumpyfuzz

        Alright, just thought it was weird that you had the benchmarks of a unofficial device.

      • Julio Cesar

        Maybe it’s not the final hardware, who knows?
        They need to test the device before release it.

      • SkyFall

        You are joking right? iPhone 5s has a multicore score of 2557 in Geekbench. LG G2 has a multicore score of 2259. So i wouldn’t say that the LG G2 destroys the iPhone.

      • Hwang Lee

        Haven’t invented anything since Wozinak haha

      • Taf Khan

        Source of info please????

      • Taf Khan

        Well Taf, don’t be surprised if you get a down vote from a droid troll or two just for asking the source of the info spouted on here.. . We know that most of the crap they spout is fabricated.

        Source: As stated on AllthingsD

        “Finally, with the 64-bit A7, Apple has made it possible for developers to take the 64-bit apps they’ve written for the Mac and bring them to iOS 7 with relative ease. And that is a huge benefit, indeed.”

        I don’t see this being an option for Samsung or any of the other manufacturers. Mac Photoshop crossing over to a iPad 5 anyone? 😀

    • Guest

      Hey, remember all those times you said benchmarks don’t matter? Yeah, I do.

      • Taf Khan

        People who Troll as a guest SUCK big time!

  • Micky Ganon

    Who cares! Apple fix the bug in bluetooth!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Jonathan

      What bug, Dr. complainer?

      • Micky Ganon

        bug in bluetooth

      • CryptoCoin420

        my bluetooth works great

      • Jonathan

        You already said that above, what’s the bug in bluetooth? Can’t connect, can’t turn it on, etc…

      • Micky Ganon

        I can not connect to the bluetooth car kit speaker , and before the ios 7 update everything worked fine

      • Jonathan

        Perhaps you have to pair them again.

      • The bug that won’t let me pair my Android devices or my car stereo.

  • Tommy Gumbs

    I agree that the end user may get any/little benefit from 64bits now, but in a few years it wil def be worth it.

    On aside note, that was/is another reason to get a 5S over the 5C. I can see the 5S receiving more updates than the 5C due to 64bit and where future ios updates are most likely going.

    • samdchuck

      I disagree, mainly because their are immediate and significant benefits. ARMv8 has a completely new instruction set which is modern, faster and better than the old instruction set which has been bogged down by legacy crap. It also has double the amount of registers, meaning it can take more data in every clock cycle. There’s also on chip encryption meaning faster and more energy efficient encryption.

      • Tommy Gumbs

        Is that why my iP5S is 40 times faster than the original iphone?

        Where is this better battery life?

        Your opinion is noted, but that’s about it.

      • samdchuck

        Part of it yes. Not sure where I said better battery life, more efficient yes. But when comparing battery life to the original iPhone the better battery life is right there. Compared to the iPhone 5 it’s twice as fast with the same battery life, partly due to the dye shrink.

  • Ignacio Irigoyen

    Apple should have consider all the feelings it was going to hurt with a 64 bit processor.

    • Alexander Novarro

      you’re joking right?!

      • Ignacio Irigoyen

        Of course I’m, sorry I forgot to put the in my previous comment

      • BoardDWorld

        Some people, no clue…

  • Chindavon

    Did you expect anything different from a competitor?

  • Dao Sasone

    Useless as of now. $ rong spent. Could’ve inovate in more features like Android

  • Albert

    I see an app that utilizes the 64bit core… i cant update it on my 5. : I wonder if it will make any differences…

  • Cody Cutrer

    Yes, 64-bit doesn’t mean anything for addressing more memory on the phone at the moment. But 64-bit doesn’t just mean memory. It means larger (and usually more) registers so that it can process more at once, *especially* when doing complicated floating point and integer math equations, as are common in 3D rendering (games) and multimedia compression/decompression (iMovie rendering, music analysis in djay, on-the-fly trancoding of videos Apple doesn’t natively support in hardware, etc.). For browsing the web and checking e-mail, 64-bit doesn’t do jack. In fact, using 64-bit pointers just makes apps use *more* memory. Though typically switching to a 64-bit processor comes hand-in-hand with more memory available, so that doesn’t matter as much. I came from a 4S to a 5s now, and it’s leaps and bounds faster (subjectively), and apps definitely stay running longer in the background, so I’m happy.

  • onebyone_

    In my personal opinion, apple just launched 64bit not for gimmick marketing, maybe they prepare for the next big iOS change. Now we see “deep” in iOS7 (first from Ive) maybe in a few years we’ll see a “depp+3D” with colours more realistics in a minimalist new UI. all of those “posibly aditions” will need a better processor. But first they need to fix ALL bugs from iOS7 ASAP

  • Barnez Hilton

    I’d expect enhancements and processing improvements on any NEW chip, like the M7, The Qualcomm CMO makes a good point about addressing memory and the need for 64-bit lines to do so to handle larger amounts of data.

    I would expect heavy processing apps like Audio decompression to improve with every new chip, 64-bit or otherwise

    • onebyone_

      maybe one day the 64bit apps will replace some complex softwares.
      like solidworks or make things like that.

  • n0ahcruz3

    There you go. Its gimmick. Just for the sake of “we-have-this-first-on-a-smartphone”. I have read somewhere that in order to utilize the processing power of 64-bit it needs to have a 4GB ram. The iphone only has 1GB. Correct me if im wrong.

    • Shadowlink

      Hmm you must have read only the title of the article of you would actually read the article it says exactly what you just said about the 4gb needed. In other words your post was a complete waste of space.

      • n0ahcruz3

        You’re right lol let me delete my post

  • ClaudieX X

    Yea yea… a ‘marketing gimmick’ that broke all benchmarks… leaving octo cores in shame !!

  • MrPringle

    Do they really think that most users need Qualcomm’s 4 or Mediatek’s 8 cores processors? What for? I prefer a well done dual core exploited at 100%


    Qualcomm and others don’t need 64bit processor!!!!!! they need 8 core processor with 4gb RAM.

  • batongxue

    This is the necessary transition.

  • Qiren_94

    Sour grapes?

  • Umut Bilgiç

    It is true that it does not necessarily help the consumer for every-day tasks, but under the hood, for programmers things get faster (debuggin or just testing) since you can throw in double the amount of quick data (becouse of the number of registers being doubled). And, it has pretty cool uses for high-end scientific stuff or as he said server base things. It also makes accessing large amount of data, and processing it faster, since it has efficienter memory mapping.