Apple dual core SGX543 graphics in iPad 2, iPhone 5

This is getting really interesting. Mobile devices were the last devices to remain single core (for the most part) but the world moves forward and in 2 years this will no longer be the case.

It means that computational frameworks like map reduce are going to be needed more and more even on mobile devices.

Apple says that they’ve made this transparent but it violates a number of the distributed computing fallacies.


A source familiar with Apple’s graphics strategy says the company will not only be upgrading its video core, but also going to multiple cores, a feature that is designed into the SGX543 design. The most likely configuration of Apple’s next custom chip is reportedly the SGX543MP2, which pairs two SGX543 cores to work as one, offering around four times the capability of the previous A4 in graphics and video tasks.

The SGX543 core is designed to parallel as many as 16 cores together, in a way that is transparent to higher level software, meaning that apps don’t have to be rewritten specifically to benefit from the new speed boost. Imagination supplies intelligent core management that automatically determines the number of cores available and accelerates the graphic tasks by distributing them across the available cores.

[From AppleInsider | Apple expected to pack ultrafast, dual core SGX543 graphics into iPad 2, iPhone 5]


  1. Many graphics systems are programmed fairly independently of the number of graphics cores.

  2. Greg… the CPU is also a dual core. :)

  3. The quote says graphics. You’re seeing a violation of parallel programming fallacies based on a quote of a non-Apple blog, which could be interpreted to refer to graphics cores, which typically are fairly transparent to the user and programmer.

    Even for CPU cores, many single-threaded apps get a transparent boost from dual-core and an SMP OS. Not to mention Grand Central Dispatch.

    Now if you had a quote from an Apple employee saying something really stupid, that would be worth calling out…

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