New Arm IP delivers true digital immersion for the 5G era

May 26, 2020

By Paul Williamson, vice president and general manager, Client Line of Business, Arm

News Highlights:

  • Arm Cortex-A78 CPU: Transforming next-generation smartphone experiences with 20% sustained performance gains
  • Arm Cortex-X Custom program: New program offers custom Cortex solutions and delivers the Arm Cortex-X1 with a 30% increase in peak performance
  • Arm Mali-G78 GPU: The highest-performing Mali GPU based on Valhall architecture with a 25% increase in performance
  • Arm Ethos-N78 NPU: Unprecedented machine learning capability with a 25% improvement in performance efficiency

During this unprecedented global health crisis, we have experienced rapid societal changes in how we interact with and rely on technology to connect, aid, and support us. As a result of this
we are increasingly living our lives on our smartphones, which have been essential in helping feed our families through application-based grocery or meal delivery services, as well as virtually seeing our colleagues and loved ones daily. Without question, our Arm-based smartphones are the computing hub of our lives.

However, even before this increased reliance on our smartphones, there was already growing interest among users to explore the limits of what is possible. The combination of these factors with the convergence of 5G and AI, are generating greater demand for more performance and efficiency in the palm of our hands.  

But more performance and efficiency are only meaningful if your smartphone is optimized to deliver the best experiences on the applications that matter to you most. Arm is committed to delivering both massive performance and efficiency gains, combined with overall security and system improvements, to ensure our partner ecosystem can offer a more immersive experience across real-world use cases. Today’s announcement of our next-generation mobile solution represents the latest manifestation of this commitment.

Cortex-A78: Bringing PC-level productivity to new smartphone form factors

The new Arm Cortex-A78 CPU answers the call for performance gains combined with more efficiencies in power and area. In fact, the Cortex-A78 is unquestionably our most efficient Cortex-A CPU ever designed for mobile. It will enable multi-day, immersive 5G experiences thanks to a 20% increase in sustained performance over Cortex-A77-based devices within a 1-watt power budget, and more efficient management of compute workloads along with greater on-device Machine Learning (ML) performance. Additionally, the performance-per-watt of Cortex-A78 makes it ideally suited for the greater overall computing needs driven by the emerging category of foldable devices with multiple and larger screens.

For more technical details on the Cortex-A78, visit our blog.

Introducing the Cortex-X Custom program

The pace of increasing performance in smartphones exceeds that of any other computing device category in the industry today. To address this insatiable demand for the highest performance possible, we’re introducing a new engagement program called the Cortex-X Custom program to give our partners the option of having more flexibility and scalability for increasing performance.

The Cortex-X Custom Program allows for customization and differentiation beyond the traditional roadmap of Arm Cortex products, enabling our partners with a solution for providing the ultimate performance for specific use cases. Arm Cortex-X1 is the program’s first CPU and the most powerful Cortex CPU to date. With a 30% peak performance increase over Cortex-A77, it offers an even more competitive solution for flagship smartphones and large-screen devices.

For more information on the new program, please visit our blog.

Mali-G78: Enabling immersive entertainment on the go

Last year saw a massive leap in Arm graphics performance and efficiency with the Mali-G77 GPU based on our new Valhall architecture. We’re not slowing down with our latest Valhall-based GPU, the Mali-G78, which will deliver a 25% increase in graphics performance relative to Mali-G77. With support for up to 24 cores, these advances are made possible via asynchronous top level, tiler enhancements, and improved fragment dependency tracking. Additionally, the power- and energy-efficient Mali-G78 can help extend mobile device battery life, enabling users to enjoy their favorite entertainment experiences even longer on the go. For developers, this means we’re making it easy to optimize their own content to run seamlessly on Arm Mali GPUs. Enhanced tools from Arm, like the Performance Advisor, allows quick detection of bottle necks and real-time reporting to enable continuous integration and faster workflow.

And based on demand from partners, alongside the premium Mali-G78, we are introducing a new sub-premium tier of GPUs. The first in this new tier is the Arm Mali-G68, which supports up to 6 cores and inherits all the latest Mali-G78 features, enabling our partners to deliver high-performance experiences to a wider audience of developers and consumers.

For more technical details on the Mali-G78, visit our blog.

Ethos-N78: Unprecedented ML capability at your fingertips

To address expanding ML use cases ranging from new AR-based smartphone applications to smart home-hubs, Arm is introducing the Ethos-N78 neural processing unit (NPU). This latest highly scalable and efficient NPU builds on the success of the Ethos-N77, by delivering greater on-device ML capabilities, and up to 25% more performance efficiency. The Ethos-N78 also offers unprecedented levels of configurability with available configurations starting at 1 TOP/s on up to 10 TOP/s.

For more technical details on the Arm Ethos-N78, visit our blog.

Engineering a new reality

The advent of 5G and the promise of greater speed, connectivity, and reduced latency will result in unimagined new user experiences that will push the limits of performance and efficiency on our computing devices like never before. We can expect to see new use cases across autonomous, AI, XR and smartphones, but these will all require technology that delivers greater performance and security, with expanded and simplified developer access. At Arm, we are taking a unique approach to address these requirements, making sure all the building blocks needed for future innovation are optimized to work together through our Total Compute approach.

Today the mobile world, its software, and applications, run on the Arm architecture. As your mobile future continues to be built on Arm, together with our ecosystem, we’re ready to propel you into true digital immersion in the 5G era, which is much closer than you think.

From our ecosystem:

“Arm’s new premium solution delivers a performant and power efficient platform that will seamlessly enable millions of Unity creators to deliver the next-generation of connected immersive experiences that will shape everyone’s daily lives.” Ralph Hauwert, vice president, Research and Development, Unity

"Facebook and Arm are collaborating to expand one of the most widely-used machine learning framework capabilities beyond the CPU. The combination of the Arm compute platform and PyTorch Mobile enables exciting new ML applications in edge devices.”  Christian Keller, product manager, PyTorch Mobile

“Through our shared vision, Arm and Crytek are partnering together to bring CRYENGINE to the Android ecosystem and enable desktop-class graphics on mobile.  Arm’s new powerful suite of premium mobile IP is at the center of ushering in a new level of visual fidelity previously thought impossible on edge devices.”  – Theodor Mader, technical director CRYENGINE, Crytek 

“Samsung and Arm have a strong technology partnership and we are very excited to see the new direction Arm is taking with Cortex-X Custom program, enabling innovation in the Android ecosystem for next-gen user experiences.” - Joonseok Kim, vice president of SoC design team at Samsung Electronics

Additional resources:

Download the launch deck here.

Kristen Ray

Director Public Relations, Arm
+1 (512) 939-9877



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