Sunday, September 16, 2012

First A6 benchmarks show iPhone 5 faster than any Android device, but for how long

When it introduced the iPhone 5 last Wednesday, Apple said that the new A6 processor was twice as fast for general operations and twice as fast for graphics. Was that just bluster? Apparently, it was not.

The first iPhone 5 benchmark results have hit Primate Labs' GeekBench, as of early Sunday morning. The cross-platform benchmarks show the iPhone 5, with a device ID of iPhone5,2 (we know there are at least two hardware variants). The total Geekbench 2 score is 1601. Compare that to the average score for the iPhone 4S, at 629 and the average score for the iPad 3, at 766.

That makes the iPhone 5 not twice as fast, but 2.5 times as fast as the iPhone 4S. It makes the iPhone 5 twice as fast as the iPad 3.

A comparison to Android phones can be found here. It's obvious that the iPhone 5 beats the best Android devices, including the quad-core Samsung Galaxy S III (1560) and the Google Nexus 7 (1591).

For comparison, we took a dual-core Samsung Galaxy S III, the U.S. version, and ran it and got a total of 1396.

Other details were revealed by the Geekbench results. The processor has 1GB of RAM, which was previously confirmed by part number markings on the A6. It runs at 1.02GHz, faster than the iPhone 4S' A5, which ran at 800Mhz.

Other details: the processor is an ARMv7 processor, with a L1 Instruction Cache of 32KB, a L1 Data Cache of 32KB, and a L2 Cache of 1MB.

While this shows the iPhone 5 tops all current Android devices, there's that word: current. Looking at the list, the numbers also show that with a 629 rating, the iPhone 4S was behind several year-old and older devices, including the Samsung Galaxy S II and the Droid 3.

What that means is that it won't be long before an Android device comes along that surpasses the iPhone 5 - in synthetic benchmarks, at least. With the iPhone having another year before a refresh, Android devices will steamroll ahead for quite some time.

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