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Intel's Shane Wall rails ARM as a blight on smartphones

Intel has never been shy about slamming its main competitors in the various markets that it has a presence. Intel talks itself up as it talks down rival AMD in the computer CPU environment and rival mobile CPU maker ARM gets much the same treatment.

Intel is picking on what it calls the slow iPhone, but is fast to point out that the slowness isn’t Apple's fault. This caveat is no doubt to placate Apple and its iPhone business, which Intel undoubtedly covets. According to Intel's Shane Wall, the problem with the iPhone is its processor which is based on ARM technology.

Wall said, "Any sort of application that requires any horse power at all and the iPhone struggles." Wall maintains that Apple did a good job tackling the mobile Internet and achieved massive buzz for its iPhone thanks to Jobs' deity-like ability to sell products.

The iPhone wasn't alone in being panned by Wall who believes that the ARM processor is blight on smartphones in general. Wall said, "The smartphone of today is not very smart. The problem they have today is they use ARM."

Wall continued to rail on ARM claiming that if you want to run the "full" internet, you are going to need to run an Intel-architecture processor. Ironically, Intel used to make an entire line of ARM-based processors that it sold to Marvell in 2006.

The writing between the lines here is that a "real" internet experience will only be available on devices running CPU's like the Intel Atom or the Moorestown architecture. Many who have used an iPhone can say the internet experience on the iPhone stands head and shoulders above the competition – that is unless you need to use Flash.

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RE: why are they targetting Apple
By BoyBawang on 10/22/2008 2:13:17 PM , Rating: 2
I really love the elegance of ARM architecture: RISC, no legacy X86, very power efficient, and hardware integration of mobile components.

ARM can simply ramp up the megahertz to make it faster but mobile is not just about power but battery life is more important.

With Windows Mobile 7 coming, I hope the future of ARM will enter and replace our legacy x86 desktop PCs

RE: why are they targetting Apple
By TomZ on 10/22/08, Rating: 0
RE: why are they targetting Apple
By omnicronx on 10/22/2008 3:42:49 PM , Rating: 2
There's nothing inherently more elegant about ARM or RISC - give me a break. At the end of the day, the elegance of a processor is more defined based on what it can deliver in terms of performance, power, functionality, size, and cost.
And which processor leads in all of these categories when taking only mobile applications into consideration? The Atom was supposed to be the successor to XSCALE, and for ultra mobile purposes, it was an extreme failure in that respect.

ARM is not relegated to running anything, in fact your statement makes no sense, ARM is the backbone of the mobile world currently runs far more OS flavors of pretty much any mainstream processor. (Windows mobile, Symbian, Darwin(Apple), Linux(android, i know darwin is also unix), and the countless amounts of other proprietary OS's that are used in cell phones around the world). This compared to the three mainstream X86 OS's, Windows, Unix, and OSX which is also technically Unix.

I could go on with the ARM list, but ill just give you the link. Many of the ones I did not list are NOT crappy niche OS's, they are broadly used.

RE: why are they targetting Apple
By MrPoletski on 10/22/2008 4:22:37 PM , Rating: 2
I think the tactic is to move x86 and eventually Microsoft onto all mobile devices. If in doubt, blame microsoft. =)

RE: why are they targetting Apple
By TomZ on 10/22/2008 4:42:53 PM , Rating: 2
Believe me - I "get" the ARM - no need to point me towards marketing blurbs. I've been programming on ARM for years now.

ARM "suffers" from the problems common to most embedded system type processors. Crappy tools, crappy OSs, and resulting low productivity. For example, what are industry-standard development tools for ARM used on non-Windows platforms? Packages like Keil are typical - functional, but very, very primitive, especially when you compare them to state-of-the art development tools for Windows.

My point really is that, if we could have X86 compatibility with similar price and performance to ARM, that would be a "good thing." One platform from high-end servers/workstations down through netbooks and into mobile devices and phones. A continuum of hardware with common software. Sounds good to me.

RE: why are they targetting Apple
By Pirks on 10/22/2008 3:50:59 PM , Rating: 2
When you call mobile OS X a crappy niche OS you look pretty stupid.

RE: why are they targetting Apple
By TomZ on 10/22/2008 4:35:20 PM , Rating: 2
Specifically, the problem with the proliferation of OSs is that there is no convergence onto any kind of standard platform. This makes it much more difficult for an open ecosystem to develop around these types of mobile devices. For example, if I write a killer app for an iPhone, then I have to port or re-write it if I want to run on a device running Symbian OS. Not to mention the other few OSs. That's the part that's crappy.

The thing that is nice about Windows is that nearly everyone uses it. So any investment made in an app or device for Windows is usable by a large customer base.

RE: why are they targetting Apple
By jtesoro on 10/24/2008 11:24:28 AM , Rating: 2
ARM is, at least for now, relegated to running Windows Mobile as well as crappy niche OSs.

To make it more accurate, "ARM is, at least for now, relegated to running crappy niche OSs like Windows Mobile"

"My sex life is pretty good" -- Steve Jobs' random musings during the 2010 D8 conference
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