Android Central: ‘The Cheapest iPhone Has a More Powerful Processor Than the Most Expensive Android Phone’

Jerry Hildenbrand, writing at Android Central:

I expect that some people are going to tell me about single thread versus multi-threaded performance and how the A13 GPU isn’t that great or how iPhones have much lower resolution screens so the chips don’t have to work as hard. All this is true, but another thing is true: the A13 is a stronger chip than the Snapdragon 865 for daily use in every category — we’ve seen this applied in real life in the iPhone 11 already. The only area it misses out is 5G, and that’s because Apple just doesn’t care about 5G yet. (The rumored iPhone 12 will almost certainly have a Qualcomm 5G chipset inside, for what it’s worth.)

Apple’s chip lead over Qualcomm has, if anything, widened, not narrowed. Not only do Apple’s high end phones far outperform Android flagships, now even Apple’s $400 iPhone SE does. This is a remarkable state of affairs, and a deeply inconvenient truth for Android fans. Geekbench pegs the A13 at about 1.5× faster than the Snapdragon 865, and about 1.8× faster than the Snapdragon 855 that powers a ton of premium Android phones still on the market, including Google’s Pixel 4.

I mention this state of affairs periodically, and when I do, I emphasize that CPU performance isn’t everything. For most people, it shouldn’t be the main thing. Everyone wants a phone that’s fast, very few actually need a phone that is the fastest. High-end Android phones are fast. So, you know, make your choice based on all the other differences between the two platforms — which differences are, I think clearly, more important than CPU performance.

If the tables were turned, and it were Qualcomm‘s chips that were faster, year after year, and Apple whose chips were slower, we’d never hear the end of it in tech publications. But as it stands, it’s an inconvenient truth that isn’t unremarked upon, but is definitely under-remarked upon.

Wednesday, 29 April 2020