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Exynos 5 Octa: Heterogeneous Multi-Processing Capability

September 10, 2013

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If you've been paying attention, you know that the Exynos 5 Octa packs a serious punch when it comes to processing power and energy efficiency. Now, the team at Samsung has made the Exynos 5 Octa even better with the introduction of a new Heterogeneous Multi-Processing (HMP) solution.

Overview of big.LITTLE Technology

Before we jump into the benefits of HMP, let's take a step back and go over the basics ofARM® big.LITTLE technology. In the Exynos 5 Octa, eight CPU cores are responsible for everything from browsing the web to playing your favorite game on your 5 Octa-powered mobile device. Four "big" 1.8GHz ARM® Cortex™-A15 cores handle intensive tasks like graphically rich gaming or HD video playback. Less intensive tasks like e-mail or text functions are tackled by four "LITTLE" 1.3GHz Cortex™-A7 cores. By dividing and conquering tasks and assigning them to the proper CPU cores, big.LITTLE technology maximizes performance while minimizing power loss.

HMP Makes big.LITTLE Technology Even Better

Now this is where HMP comes into play. Like a sports team, big.LITTLE technology relies on a software "coach" to call the plays and assign tasks to each core. In a basic implementation of big.LITTLE technology, this "coach" would alternate between using "big" and "LITTLE" CPU cores based on the computational intensity of any given task, and one core or cluster of cores would remain inactive while its counterpart was engaged.

With HMP, all eight of the CPU cores in the Exynos 5 Octa can be utilized at the same time. This provides users with an unlimited mobile experience in the current mobile environment and also paves the way for more advanced and complex functionality in the future. HMP is extremely versatile. Using a global load balancing scheduler, HMP can assign a single core to handle a task with low computational intensity in order to maximize power efficiency. On the flipside, HMP can also simultaneously utilize each of the eight individual cores in the 5 Octa to run multiple tasks in real time. The global load balancing scheduler pays attention to user workloads and will pull in the necessary available resources for the system to run flexibly and efficiently. By analyzing and assigning tasks,this highly complex software system maximizes efficiency by balancing CPU workload.

The result is the most advanced use of big.LITTLE technology to date and a huge leap forward for multi-processing capability in mobile devices. By allowing for the simultaneous operation of both "big" and "LITTLE" cores in the Exynos 5 Octa, Samsung offers an optimized HMP solution to the balancing act of maximizing mobile device capability while minimizing power loss.

Samsung has always been a leader in big.LITTLE technology, and this new Octa-core HMP solution is an industry first. HMP sets the stage for the future as mobile devices are increasingly called upon to handle complex and graphically rich tasks. Through this innovative solution, the benefits of big.LITTLE technology are maximized to their full potential. Get ready, because the future of mobile processing is evolving, and the Exynos 5 Octa with HMP is leading the way.

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