Sony Puts a Quad-Core CPU in the Gamers' Pockets with the NGP
Sony's NGP is an excellent example of a new generation of multicore devices that bring extreme power to mobile users. Gamers have always required powerful CPUs and GPUs. It shouldn't come as a surprise to see modern gaming devices featuring a quad-core CPUs. First, servers and desktops offered quad-core CPUs, then laptops, and now mobile devices that fit in your pocket.
Sony's NGP contains a quad-core PowerVR SGX543MP4+ GPU from Imagination Technologies. This means that this portable gaming device has a quad-core CPU and a quad-core GPU. You will probably see more mobile devices adding cores in the coming months. Parallel programming is going to become essential for mobile devices, and you should see a quad-core tablet soon.
The big challenge is transforming mobile multicore power into application performance without wasting battery life. Hardware manufacturers made a big effort to increase power efficiency for multicore microprocessors. Now, architects and developers have to work hard to take advantage of this power efficiency. It is essential to design algorithms that don't waste battery life.
I'm working on several forthcoming posts that demonstrate different scenarios for diverse mobile multicore processors and micro-architectures, and I've considered comments received from previous posts. Stay tuned and feel free to add your comments.