Supercharged Samsung tablet teased by ARM

Supercharged Samsung tablet teased by ARM
Next-gen slate to feature Exynos 5 and Mali-T604 GPU tech

ARM has talked to TechRadar about a next-generation Samsung product featuring a powerful new Mali GPU product, and the chip giant's timeline for its products could suggest a 2012 arrival.

It's no secret that forthcoming Samsung's Exynos 5 chip will extensively feature ARM designs, and that includes the quad-core capable Mali-T604 GPU.

And with ARM expecting the first of its T604 products to arrive in the second half of this year, then obvious question posed by TechRadar was whether it would be a Samsung phone or tablet.

Exynos 5 and the Mali GPU

"The Galaxy S2 has got the Mali-400 in and the Samsung Galaxy S3 also has the Mali-400 in," said senior product manager Steve Steele.

"Samsung announced at MWC that their next-generation platform Exynos 5 has the T604 in, so don't join too many dots together but clearly that's coming through at some point.

"The first product [featuring Mali-T604] may not be a phone – we shouldn't assume anything."

Samsung isn't in line to launch the first from Google (that honour will likely go to Asus) but the Korean firm is tipped to be launching a Nexus tablet in the future based on the Mali-T604 and the Exynos 5 CPU.

Meeting of minds

ARM's executives have forged a vital relationship with powerhouse Samsung, something Steele put down to 'a meeting of minds' and flagship phones like the Galaxy S3 have proved massively important

Samsung Galaxy S3

"It's been a great flagship for us," added ARM's Jem Davies. "You're selling IP which is completely non-visual of itself but it's destined for a visual purpose.

"You need something to show people. We're very grateful to Samsung. They are very keen."

ARM has launched the follow up to the Mali-400 (which features in the Samsung Galaxy S3) this week, and it's a major step forward, according to the firm.

"We're launching the Mali-450 which doubles the capacity of the Mali-400 taking it from four cores up to eight cores," explained Steele.

"It's worth bearing in mind that the same driver software platform runs all the way back through the series to the Mali 200 and through the 400, so you can slide it in underneath [current designs] and the job's done."

Patrick Goss

Patrick Goss is the ex-Editor in Chief of TechRadar. Patrick was a passionate and experienced journalist, and he has been lucky enough to work on some of the finest online properties on the planet, building audiences everywhere and establishing himself at the forefront of digital content.  After a long stint as the boss at TechRadar, Patrick has now moved on to a role with Apple, where he is the Managing Editor for the App Store in the UK.