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Cellphones Handhelds Intel Hardware

New Analysis Casts Doubt On Intel's Smartphone Performance vs. ARM Devices 94

Posted by Soulskill
from the keep-on-marking-those-benches dept.
MojoKid writes "A few weeks ago, the analyst company ABI Research published a report claiming that Intel's new CloverTrail+ platform (dual-core Medfield) for smartphones was significantly faster and more power efficient than anything ARM's various partners were shipping. If you follow the smartphone market, that was a very surprising claim. Medfield was a decent midrange platform when it launched in 2012, but Intel made it clear that its goal for Medfield was to compete with other platforms in its division — not seize the performance crown outright. Further investigation by other analysts has blown serious holes in the ABI Research report. Not only does it focus on a single, highly questionable benchmark (AnTuTu), the x86 version of that benchmark is running different code than the ARM flavors. Furthermore, the recently released Version 3.3 of the test is much faster on Intel hardware than on any of the other platforms. But even with those caveats in place, the ABI Research report is bad science. Single-source performance comparisons almost inevitably are."
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New Analysis Casts Doubt On Intel's Smartphone Performance vs. ARM Devices

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  • by h4rr4r (612664) on Friday July 12, 2013 @12:29PM (#44262269)

    Not if you use the NDK, which most games and video applications will use for performance reasons.

    You can of course compile for both.

  • by OneAhead (1495535) on Friday July 12, 2013 @12:36PM (#44262345)

    News at 11.

    I don't think there's any chipmaker (CPU, GPU or otherwise) who hasn't been caught doing it. Not that that makes it right, of course.

    For the quick readers, note that this is about Clover Trail, not to be confused with the recently announced Bay Trail. Though it does cast doubts on Intel's claims about the latter's performance []...

  • by NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) on Friday July 12, 2013 @12:52PM (#44262523)
    Intel has a VERY long history of questionable ;) benchmarks, all the way to tweaking processor designs to run benchmark code faster. Microsoft's "Get The Facts" propaganda is just a pale imitation of Intel's history.
  • by phantomfive (622387) on Friday July 12, 2013 @01:01PM (#44262587) Journal
    If you write your code in C, you can port it relatively easy to iPhone, Android, WP8, and Blackberry (depending how much UI code you have). If you write it in Java, avoiding the NDK, you have to do two-four times as much work to port it.

    Which would you rather do, use the NDK and recompile, or write once for each platform? "The right way" isn't always a single choice, it's usually a compromise.....

    If Intel processors become popular in Android phones, Google will probably introduce a multiple-architecture executable format, much like iPhone does with FAT and MACH (currently around 70% of apps for the iPhone have two architectures, one for ARM7 and one for ARM7s).
  • Re:Queue (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ShanghaiBill (739463) on Friday July 12, 2013 @01:54PM (#44263195)

    The arm fanboys

    We are not "ARM fanboys". We are "Intel-haters". There is a difference.

  • by makomk (752139) on Friday July 12, 2013 @05:22PM (#44265157) Journal

    Wow. What's more, apparently that optimisation was added by Intel after the benchmark was developed:

    What's more, this optimization wasn't present in ICC until a recent release. Somehow I don't think that they just now discovered it has general purpose value. More likely case is that they discovered is they could manipulate AnTuTu's scores. Seems to coincide well with this third-party report appearing showing how amazing Atom's perf/W is - using nothing but AnTuTu. Or the leaked scores seen for CloverTrail+ and now BayTrail that are AnTuTu. Is this really a coincidence?

    So basically they modified their compiler to optimise away the actual benchmark, then got someone to release a third-party report based solely on the benchmark they'd just manipulated the results of.

"Regardless of the legal speed limit, your Buick must be operated at speeds faster than 85 MPH (140kph)." -- 1987 Buick Grand National owners manual.