Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 23rd Oct 2012 19:12 UTC
Apple It's one of those days again: Apple held a product announcement today, announcing several new products. The most important of which was rumoured about for a long time now: a smaller iPad. It's called the iPad mini, and has the potential to become the best-selling iPad - and thus, the best selling tablet.
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A bit disappointed
by darknexus on Tue 23rd Oct 2012 23:21 UTC
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I was hoping they'd at least put an A5X chip in there rather than just the A5. Spec wise, this thing seems rather similar to the iPod Touch with a larger screen (although a lower resolution). I'm not sure how it'll do against the Nexus 7. It doesn't fair well in price, but most iOS apps seem to be better quality than their Android counterparts, so it might win there. As a geek I'm perhaps biased to say it doesn't have high enough specs, but then again, that doesn't matter to 99% of the people who will buy it. It's that revised iPad 3 that actually interests me more than the new Mini. With that upgraded processor, that thing is going to fly.

Reply Score: 1

RE: A bit disappointed
by galvanash on Wed 24th Oct 2012 00:08 in reply to "A bit disappointed"
galvanash Member since:

I was hoping they'd at least put an A5X chip in there rather than just the A5.

Apple is not going to put the A5X in anything new - it doesn't make sense for them to do that. The A5X is still a 45nm chip, while the currently manufactured version of the A5 is 32nm - the A5X is over twice as big and uses ALOT more power.

Its all about maximizing profitability on varied products - the A5 is used in ALOT of devices (iPad2, iPod Touch, AppleTV, and now iPad mini). Its tiny, so you can make a whole lot of them cheap - and it is packaged with RAM on the chip, so it needs much less PCB area. Apple is going to put it into anything they deem "value oriented".

The A5X is is a layover from the previous generation. It is probably cheaper for Apple to make an A6X now, as it is much smaller and uses the same process node as the A5.

I expect you will either never see another new product with an A5X in it, or it will get shrunk to 32nm first (like the A5 was) if there is ever an "Old New iPad" type SKU.

Besides, your really don't need 4 GPUs to push a 1024x768 screen. Other than the GPUs, there isn't all that much difference between the two chips.

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE: A bit disappointed
by phoenix on Wed 24th Oct 2012 20:17 in reply to "A bit disappointed"
phoenix Member since:

I was hoping they'd at least put an A5X chip in there rather than just the A5.

The only differences between the A5 and the A5X are the CPU speed (800 in the iPhone vs 1000 MHz in the iPad 3) and number of GPU cores (2 vs 4). The *only* reason there's 4 GPU cores in the A5X is to support increase in pixels in the iPad 3.

The iPad mini has (approx) the same number of pixels as the iPad 2 and the iPhone 4, so why shove a ginormous GPU into it?

Bump the CPU clock up a bit and you have a tablet-friendly version of the A5.

Reply Parent Score: 3