ARM is the dominant player in the mobile realm for processor and graphics processors that are able to provide the performance that consumers want in small handheld devices and still squeeze all the runtime possible out of the battery onboard. ARM is working on new designs for future products and is teasing with the power it has in store for its future hardware. ARM claims that within 18 months its Mali GPU will allow a mobile phone to be as powerful as the PS3 or Xbox 360.
ARM has noted that in order to allow for the next generation of gaming and user interfaces on mobile devices that it needs more than just a GPU and must take advantage of the CPU and GPU for the power needed. ARM also notes that it can’t meet this goal by simply using more hardware. ARM believes that other techniques are needed to provide the experience users and developers want on mobile devices. The other techniques are required to provide the needed performance and still get the battery life needed.
These other techniques will include shrinking the process node, aggressive power management, and multiple GPUs. The use of multiple GPUs will allow the performance when needed and the ability to sip power when not. Notebooks already use that tech with things like NVIDIA Optimus. ARM is also talking up its Mali T604. This chip will be the first to enable GPGPU capability and will support OpenCL. This chip is being sampled now with products set to appear in 2012.