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Processor Wars Episode II: MediaTek strikes back

mediatek Helio

Last week we reported on the fact that MediaTek was pulling a Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 with their latest Helio X20 processor and getting all hot and bothered when tested with 2016’s smartphones.

MediaTek has finally come out and dismissed such claims, saying that the rumours are all a pile of horse dung. Okay, maybe not in those exact words, but you get the point.

The Chinese SoC manufacturer has insisted on Weibo that the Helio X20 is already in mass production and there have been no instances of chip overheating observed. GSM Arena notes that while this is not too surprising, what is surprising is the way the chip stays cool.

Apparently, when the higher end pair of 2.5GHz Cortex-A72 cores gets hot, they shut off, turning the chip into an octa-core Cortex-A53 processor. Basically, that means that for the most part, the fancy deca-core Helio X20 is only running on eight cores.

That’s like buying a V10 car but only using all the cylinders some of the time. Actually, it’s worse because the two highest performing cores are the ones that aren’t working. That’s actually more like telling the only two grade-A scholars in your 10-man group assignment to take a break while the other average joes work on the assignment.

Okay, maybe that isn’t a fair comparison, but on the surface, it sure looks like it. We’ll have to see how this chip actually pans out in daily usage because that’s the most important aspect. Who cares about how many cores you have, I just want it to be as smooth as a baby’s bottom.