What 64 bit means to iPhone 5s

Great article discussing the advantages of Apple’s new 64 bit OS:

How does 64-bit help Apple?

Here’s how going 64-bit makes sense for the iPhone 5S, and for Apple’s mobile devices going forward.

Memory: Mobile devices aren’t facing the 4GB barrier yet. (Game consoles weren’t either: the Playstation 4 and Xbox One will be the first to ship with more than 4GB of memory.) The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 currently has the most RAM in a mobile device, packing in 3GB pretty much just so Samsung can show off. In comparison, the iPhone 5 – along with the new iPhone 5C and iPhone 5S – sport only 1GB of RAM. The iPhone 4 and 4s have 512MB. One reason for that is that RAM has to be on all the time, consuming precious battery power. Right now, Apple does not need a 64-bit chip to handle memory.

However, the iPhone and iPad may reach or surpass the 4GB threshold in the next two or three years. If so, developers will have been building 64-bit iOS software for years by the time iPads, iPhones, and any other iDevices have require a 64-bit architecture. That’s a good way to ensure a seamless transition for customers.

Speed: The iPhone 5S does get performance benefits from going 64-bit. Early results from iPhone 5S review units tested with Primate Labs’ Geekbench tool (nods to private sources, AnandTech and Daring Fireball) for measuring processor performance show:

  • The iPhone 5S 64-bit mode outperformed 32-bit mode by up to 25 percent. That means most apps will get a free performance boost just for recompiling to 64-bit.
  • The iPhone 5S processor is about twice as fast as the iPhone 5 in everything but memory access (that’s 1.4x faster).
  • The iPhone 5S about 25 percent faster than the iPhone 5 for everyday Web browsing (some Javascript tests are twice as fast as 5).

“Converting to 64-bit offers a performance improvement on the order of 10 to 20 percent,” said Kevin Krewell, senior editor of Microprocessor Report. ”The part that isn’t separable is that we have a new chip in the A7, and the A7 is much faster than the A6. Just the architecture of the chip has much better performance, in and above the change to 64-bit.”

iPhone 5S CPU Performance

The 64-bit A7 isn’t just a marketing stunt. It delivers real performance benefits for apps right now. Apple builds further on those benefits by converting all of iOS 7 to 64-bit for the iPhone 5S – and for any future 64-bit devices (cough iPad 5 cough) that come along. That means iOS 7 – along with core apps like Safari, Mail, Photos, Maps, and Siri – all wring the most benefits from 64-bit performance, and some of those components improve performance for third-party apps as well.

Fancy Features: The 64-bit architecture used in the A7 makes Apple’s new Touch ID fingerprint scanning technology possible, thanks to its encrypted on-chip security. Sure, a few smartphones have offered fingerprint readers (like the Motorola Atrix 4G) but no one has pushed the technology to the level Apple’s trying to achieve. Touch ID not only has a sophisticated biometric sensor, but Apple is integrating (optional) biometric security deep into its processor. That’s unprecedented. It also means Touch ID will never be available for 32-bit iOS devices – it’s a high-profile, front-and-center feature that’s 64-bit only. Assuming Touch ID survives countless attacks (from both security experts and hackers) and everyday users embrace it (early reviews are promising), expect the tech behind it, called Secure Enclave, to become central to the iOS experience. Coming next: Passbook and mobile payments.”

For more of the article read here: http://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/iphone-5s-64-bit-a7-processor/

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