Apple are well known for their ability to develop incredibly popular products. They marry wonderful design with technical excellence. The new iPhone 5S at first glance seems like a marginal improvement on the previous iPhone 5 – improved camera and fingerprint scanner. Whilst these are both excellent developments it really is the fact that they’ve included a 64 bit processor that sets the tone for the future of mobile.
Since Apple have announced the A7 CPU for the iPhone 5S, Samsung have piped up and mentioned that they have something in the works. Apple though have a great head start. And the more you think about the benefits of 64 bit mobile devices (especially in the hands of Apple), the more exciting things get.
Convergence of iOS and OSX
Apple provide a single development environment for iOS and OSX. As processing capabilities become similar, it should be much easier for developers to compile an iOS app for OSX and vice versa. This is excellent news for the Apple eco-system and even better news for developers. A quick port is more likely to happen than a complete re-write. We might even see a new Macbook Air type laptop powered by this kind of processor in the future. With astounding battery and iOS like user experience it could be the machine of many users dreams.
You need a 64 bit processor to be able to address more than 3Gb of system memory. Whilst this may not feature in the iPhone 5S yet, the door has been unlocked to enable even more memory to be packed into these devices. This could mean better multi-tasking in the future. Or apps which apply more demands on the system.
The most obvious improvement when moving over to 64 bit CPU is it should be faster. This is because when coded right apps do not need to refer to memory as much. Apparently the iPhone 5S is twice as fast as the iPhone 5. This situation might get even better as 3rd party developers start to exploit the 64 bit architecture.
By executing commands more efficiently one can expect improvements in battery life. Better battery life is crucial for the way mobile devices are used today. This can only be a good thing.