Saturday 16 January 2016

iPhone 6S absolutely kills Android phones in Antutu benchmark


There is a saying that iPhone - or rather Apple's products - are never about benchmarks. Those who know about these things a bit thoroughly, and understand smartphone hardware, realise that it is an absurd statement to make. The iPhone, especially in the last three odd years, has become very powerful, even on the paper and in benchmarks. Now, we have a sort of proof of it. In its annual list of most powerful phones, Antutu, a popular benchmarking app, has revealed the score managed by the iPhone 6S. And it is truly phenomenal.
The iPhone 6S, according to Antutu, scores 132620 points. This is nearly 50 per cent more than what the second fastest phone - Huawei Mate 8 - manages. Meizu Pro and the Galaxy Note 5, both of which use Samsung's Exynos 7420 processor, come third and fourth respectively.
The iPhone manages top honours despite packing in a processor that has just two cores and 2GB RAM. In comparison, many of the Android phones not only have processors with eight cores but also 4GB RAM.
However, the numbers are hardly surprising. As we have explained it earlier, the processor used inside the iPhone may have just two cores, it is a very very fast processor because of its internal architecture. Due to its architecture, the A9 processor used in the iPhone 6S is very fast at single-thread computing, something that largely determines performance in day to day use. Even though theoretically processors like the Exynos 7420 and Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 can be used to do a lot of fast computing, if the code can utilise all their cores simultaneously, in reality it is not often possible. Not only there are limitations related to writing apps that can use multi-threaded computing but the processors like the Snapdragon 810 also start throttling and slow down because they heat up very fast when stressed.
In terms of hardware, for Android 2015 has been a terrible year. As we have noted earlier, this has been one area where Apple just totally outgunned Android manufacturers.
However, it seems that the 2016 would be somewhat better. The vibe coming from the Qualcomm's Snapdragon 820 is good. Unlike the Snapdragon 810 that used off-the-shelf cores, the Snapdragon 820 uses custom cores, is seemingly much more efficient, is more powerful in terms of single-thread performance, and probably doesn't heat up like its predecessor. At the same time Samsung too is gearing up to offer something special in its Exynos 8990, which too uses custom cores.

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