TI announced a new top player in their OMAP 4 processor lineup. In case you missed it the BlackBerry PlayBook runs a TI OMAP 4 processor at 1Ghz called the 4430. There is a 4440 which runs at 1.5Ghz but RIM did not go for that one. On the other hand this new 1.8Ghz OMAP 4470 could almost double the processing power for the BlackBerry PlayBook in future larger 10 inch designs with larger batteries.
TI touts that this new 4470 processor offers:
Customers designing ultrathin laptops, tablets or smartphones around previously released OMAP 4 processors (OMAP4430 and OMAP4460 processors) gain the added benefit of pin-to-pin hardware and software compatibility for maximum re-use and faster time-to-market.
The new 4470 processor bumps up performance with:
- Two ARM Cortex-A9 MPCores running up to 1.8GHz per core for an 80% increase in Web browsing performance
- Two ARM Cortex-M3 cores – Smart multicore processing optimized for low-power and real-time responsiveness
- SGX544 graphics core – 2.5x overall graphics performance increase; support for DirectX, OpenGL ES 2.0, OpenVG 1.1, and OpenCL 1.1
- Hardware composition engine with dedicated 2D graphics core – Frees GPU to manage intensive tasks; maximizes power-efficiency
- Supports as many as three HD displays and up to QXGA (2048×1536) resolution; HDMI supporting stereoscopic 3D
- Dual-channel, 466 MHz LPDDR2 memory – Higher memory bandwidth enables rendering and compositing of multilayer content at high resolutions
- Complete pin-to-pin hardware and software compatibility – Rapid transition and maximum re-use of investment from OMAP4430 and OMAP4460 processors
Who knows if RIM will actually use the OMAP 4470 processor but its great to see that its there. One of RIM’s biggest problems in the past was using Marvel’s processor in their phones which did not have a good upgrade path without rewriting parts of the OS like they just had to for BlackBerry OS 7. That is why RIM decided to dump Marvel more or less in future phones except for the upcoming Curve Apollo. On the other hand there is still TI’s OMAP5 processors that will supposedly run at 2Ghz with dual cores.
The question truly is if the PlayBook really needs a faster processor now. What I really want to see is more RAM in the device since it seems to run out when you run too many apps concurrently.