Samsung debuts 1GHz "iPhone" processor

San Francisco (CA) – Samsung and Intrinsity have designed a 45 nanometer (nm) ARM Cortex-A8 processor capable of delivering 2000DMIPS at 1GHz. The dual-issue chip, code-named Hummingbird, features 32KB data and instruction caches as well as an ARM Neon multi-media extension.

ARM Cortex A8 architecture is currently found in a number of MID devices, including the Palm Pre and iPhone 3GS. Indeed, the speedy 3GS is powered by a Samsung S5PC100 system-on-chip (SoC) running at a respectable 600MHz. However, the Hummingbird is one of the “fastest available” Cortex-A8 processor on the market – and will likely pose a formidable challenge to Intel’s nascent Moorestown.

“Not only is [Hummingbird] the fastest available Cortex-A8 processor in an LP technology on the market, but we believe it has the lowest leakage and dynamic power consumption of any high-end mobile processor core out there,” claimed Intrinsity CEO Bob Russo. “Mobile device end-users want smoother video, faster gaming, and a longer battery life. Meeting these conflicting demands typically means building a new processor implementation from scratch. That can take as long as two or more years and hundreds of engineers – a very expensive proposition. Intrinsity’s FastCore solution could be available in as quickly as four months at a fraction of the cost. “

Dr. Jae Cheol Son of Samsung Electronics concurred with Russo’s assessment.

“The biggest challenge in mobile processor core design and implementation is to achieve high clock speed performance while keeping the power consumption low,” said Cheol Son. “Collaboration between Samsung and Intrinsity combines the best design and implementation technologies in the industry in successfully meeting the aggressive performance and power consumption targets of the Hummingbird.”