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Posts Tagged ‘samsung’

Samsung S3FBP5A Bio-Processor Targets Fitness Tracking Wearables

December 30th, 2015 No comments

We now have many wearables capable of monitoring your activities, be it smartwatches or fitness tracker, and usually they are comprised of several small sensor chips, a low power micro-controller, a Bluetooh radio, and possibly some other ICs . Samsung has been designing and just launched a bio-processor to regroup most of those features into a single chip which should only require a fourth of the area required by current multi-chip solutions.

Samsung_S3FBP5A

While the press release did not mention the part number, the included picture – shown above – sort of gave a clue, and Samsung S3FBP5A bio-processor has the following specifications:

  • MCU – ARM Cortex-M4
  • Memory – 256 KB RAM
  • Storage – 512 KB flash
  • DSP
  • Sensors – 5 Analog frontends (AFEs) measuring:
    • PPG (photoplethysmography)
    • ECG (electrocardiography)
    • Skin temperature
    • BIA (bioelectrical impedance analysis)
    • Galvanic skin response (GSR)
  • I/Os – SPI, I2C
  • PMIC
  • Security units

The sensors will enable measurements of body fat, skeletal muscle mass, heart rate, heart rhythm, skin temperature and stress level in a single chip. The company  also mentioned several wearable reference platforms are now available including wrist band, board and patch type reference devices, but did not provide any details.

Samsung S3FBP5A Bio-Processor is currently in mass production, and should be found in devices in H1 2016. You can visit Samsung S3FBP5A bio-processor page for not that many extra details.

Via Liliputing.

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Samsung Exynos 8890 Octa-core Processor to Feature Custom ARMv8 Cores and Mali-T880 GPU

November 12th, 2015 1 comment

Samsung Exynos 7420 processor is at the top of benchmark charts for smartphones, but the company is still pushing for more performance and power efficiency with their upcoming Exynos 8890 processor that promises 30% improvements in performance, and 10% in power efficiency.

Samsung_Exynos_8_OctaWhile Exynos 7 Octa was made with ARM’s own Cortex A53 and A57 cores, Samsung did not go with Cortex A72 in 8890, but instead decided to design their own ARMv8 cores and coupled for of these with four low power ARM Cortex A53 cores, and a Mali-T880 GPU. Samsung also included a LTE Rel.12 Cat.12/13 modem that enables speeds up to 600Mbps DL (Cat.12) and 150Mbps UL (Cat.13), and the processor will be manufactured using 14nm FinFET process technology. Excluding the custom cores, and the manufacturing process, this configuration is similar to the recently unveiled Huawei Kirin 950 processor using four Cortex A72 cores and TSMC 16nm FinFET+ technology instead.

Mass production of Exynos 8 Octa processor should start before the end of the year.

Via Liliputing

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Categories: Samsung Exynos Tags: armv8, samsung, smartphone

Linux 4.3 Release – Main Changes, ARM and MIPS Architectures

November 4th, 2015 2 comments

Linus Torvalds released Linux Kernel 4.3 last week-end:

So it *felt* like the last week of the rc series was busy, to the point where I got a bit worried about the release. But doing the actual numbers shows that that really was just my subjective feeling, probably due to the kernel summit and travel back home from Korea. It wasn’t actually a particularly busy week, it’s just that the pull requests were more noticeable in the last couple of days.

We had a network update and a late fix for a x86 vm86 mode bug introduced by the vm86 cleanups, but other than that it’s just a collection of various small one-liners all over. Ok, the vm86 mode thing was a one-liner too, it was just slightly more nerve-wracking because it looked scarier than it was before people (Andy) figured out what was going on.

The changes from rc7 are dominated by the network stuff, but as you can tell from the appended shortlog it’s not anything particularly scary.

So on the whole, this remains a rather calm release cycle until the very end. And with the release of 4.3, obviously the merge window for 4.4 is open, and let’s keep our fingers crossed that that will be an equally calm release. Especially since apparently Greg has decided ahead of time (as an experiment brought on by discussion at the kernel summit) that 4.4 will be another LTS release.

Linus

Linux 4.2 brought us file systems and networking changed, new cryptography implementations, AMD GPU driver support for more graphics card, among other things. Some changes made to Linux 4.3 include:

  • Removal of EXT-3 file system (EXT-4 file system will handle EXT-3)
  • Various fixed for BTRFS, EXT-4, F2FS, and XFS file systems
  • IPv6 is now built into the kernel by default.
  • New driver framework for nonvolatile memory devices (e.g.EEPROMs). See nvmem.txt for details.
  • The networking layer added “lightweight tunnel” support.

More user visible and internal changes can be found on LWN’s merge window articles [1], [2] and [3].

I’ve also compiled some of the new features and improvements specific to the ARM architecture with a focus on Allwinner, Rockchip, Amlogic and /Mediatek processors often featured in this blog:

  • Allwinner:
    • A10 / A13 / A20 / A23 / A31 – Enabled OTG controller
    • A10 / A10s / A13 / A20 – Support for DMA engine
    • A23 / A33 – Support for USB controllers
    • most of Allwinner SoC – Support for Allwinner Security System crypto accelerator (sunxi-ss)
    • AXP152 – AXP152 mfd support
    • Added boards – Iteaduino Plus A10 board, Ippo-q8h-a33 v1.2 tablet board
  • Rockchip
    • Audio – Machine drivers for Rockchip systems with MAX98090 and RT5645 and RT5650
    • Added USB PHY support for RK3066 and RK3188, enabled on Marsboard
    • Reserve unusable memory region (0xfe000000~0xff000000) on RK3288 and RK3368
    • Fixed suspend issues on RK3288
    • Added support for phase inverters
    • Added support for Rockchip RK3368 including clock-controller
    • Added support for Netxeon R89 board, two Chromebooks (Veyron family), and R88 board (RK3368)
  • Amlogic (Minor changes)
    • meson6: DTS: Fix wrong reg mapping and IRQ numbers
    • meson8b: Properly include clk.h
  • Mediatek
    • Added basic support for Mediatek MT6580
    • Added SMP support for Mediatek MT6795
    • Mediatek MT8173: cpuidle-dt updates, watchdog device, misc other additions
    • Added MT6397 PMIC support to MT8173 eval board
  • Qualcomm
    • Qualcomm MSM8916 and APQ8016 updates for USB
    • Pinctrl driver updates for Qualcomm SPMI-MPP, and Qualcomm Technologies QDF2xxx ARM64 SoCs
    • Qualcomm driver for SMM/SMD (Shared Memory Driver)
    • Regulator driver for the Qualcomm RPM
    • Device tree updates for Compulab QS600, Inforce 6410 & 6540,  APQ8074 Dragonboard, etc…
  • Samsung
    • Various defconfig and device tree updates for Exynos processors
    • cpufreq driver updates
    • clk driver updates for Exynos 3250, 4210, 4412, and 5250 SoCs
  • Xilinx – ZynqMP: A bunch of devices added to the existing DTSI (sdhci and watchdog on ep108, DWC3 usb, SMMU, CANs node…)
  • Other new ARM SoCs & hardware platforms – Broadcom North Star 2 (ns2), Marvell Berlin4CT,  Freescale i.MX6UL boards, SocioNext (previously Panasonic) UniPhier, Texas Instruments DM814x, Gumstix Overo platforms

There have also been some changes for MIPS architecture mostly committed by Imagination Technologies themselves:

  • Fixed JZ4740 build
  • Cavium Octeon CN68XX improvements
  • Some work on the clock framework
  • Added uprobes support
  • Support for the I6400
  • Moved ath79 GPIO driver to drivers/gpio
  • Various fixes

Finally, I’ve generated Linux 4.3 Changelog with comments only (12.3MB) using git log v4.2..v4.3 --stat. Normally I would also recommend checking out the changelog on KernelNewbies here, but they have not even updated Linux 4.2 changelog yet.

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Graperain G6818 IBOX Board is Powered by Samsung S5P6818 Octa-core Cortex A53 Processor

November 2nd, 2015 7 comments

Shortly after writing about NanoPi2 development board based on Samsung S5P4418 processor, I checked some other more featured solutions based on the same processor, but made by competitors such as Graperain G4418 IBOX Card Computer or ARMBest Core4418 module. Whiel browsing Shenzhen Graperain Technology website, I discovered another processor by Samsung with S5P6818 octa core Cortex A53 processor found in their G6818 IBOX single board computer.

Graperain_G6818_IBOX

Board specifications:

  • SoC – Samsung S5P6818 octa-core ARM Cortex A53 processor @ 1.4 to 1.6 GHz with Mali-400MP 3D GPU
  • System Memory – 2GB DDR3 up to 800MHz (1GB optional)
  • Storage – 8GB eMMC Flash (16GB optional) + 2x micro SD slot
  • Video Output / Display I/F – micro HDMI and VGA connectors; LCD (RGB), MIPI DSI and LVDS interfaces;
  • Audio – micro HDMI, headphone jack, speaker header;
  • Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet (RTL8211E), Wifi and Bluetooth 4.0 (Realtek RTL8723BU module)
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x micro USB OTG port
  • Camera – BT601, BT656 Camera Interface
  • Expansion
    • 2x 10-pin header with GPIO, SPI, UART, and ADC signals
    • Serial – UART0 for debugging, UART1 TTL levels
  • Misc – IR receiver; power, reset and 2 users buttons;  RTC with battery slot
  • Power
    • 5V DC via power barrel
    • 2-pin battery header for 4.2V lithium battery
    • AXP228 PMIC
  • Dimensions – 100 x 68 mm

S5P6818_BoardThe company can offer 4.3″, 5″, 7″, 10.1″, 11.6″ and 15.6″ capacitive displays working with the board. There’s no information about software at all on their website, but we can probably assume it will run Linux and Android like it’s little brother S5P4418 [Update: I’ve been informed the board supports Android, Linux 3.4.39 + Qt, and Ubuntu]. Information about S5P6818 is also sparse, but the company also mentioned a system-on-module and baseboard on ARM community website,  where we get at least a block diagram.

S5P6818_Block_DiagramThe company also claims S5P6818 processor is pin-to-pin compatible with S5P4418, which is conceivable since both are available in a 17×17 mm 513-pin FCBGA package according to informations on Nexell website. That means NanoPi2 could also have an S5P6818 version soon too (NanoPi3?).

I don’t have any details about pricing or availability for the Graperain board, but you can find a few more details on the company’s G6818 IBOX Card Computer page.

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NanoPi2 is a Tiny Board with Samsung S5P4418 Processor, WiFi and Bluetooth Connectivity

October 30th, 2015 31 comments

FriendlyARM released NanoPi board this summer, a small and inexpensive development board based on Samsung S3C2451 ARM9 processor with both WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity. The company has now unveils a more powerful, and slightly wider, version with NanoPi2 featuring Samsung S5P4418 quad core Cortex A9 processor with 1GB RAM, AP6212 wireless module, a new HDMI output, and the same connectors for I/Os and LCD displays.

NanoPi2NanoPi2 specifications:

  • SoC – Samsung S5P4418 quad core Cortex A9 processor @ up to 1.4GHz
  • System Memory – 1GB 32bit DDR3
  • Storage – 2 x Micro SD Slot
  • Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth LE 4.0 via AP6212 module
  • Video Output / Display I/F- 1x HDMI 1.4a, 0.5 mm pitch SMT FPC seat for type-A full-color LCD (RGB: 8-8-8)
  • Camera – 24-pin DVP interface
  • USB – 1x USB Host port; 1x micro USB 2.0 OTG port for power and data
  • Expansions Headers – 40-pin Raspberry Pi compatible header with UART, I2C, SPI, GPIOs…
  • Debugging – 4-pin header for serial console
  • Misc – User and reset buttons, power and user LEDs, RTC battery header
  • Power Supply – 5V/2A via micro USB port
  • Dimension: 75 x 40 mm (6-layer PCB)
  • Weight – 22 g

The board boots from a micro SD card (on the right below) with either Android 4.4.2 or Debian.

Samsung_S5P4418_Board

NanoPi2 Wiki describes the board, shows how to install the images, build U-boot, Linux 3.4.x and Android, and provides links to the schematics and mechanical files (PDF). The Debian Image Build System (DIBS) and other tools can also be found on ARMWorks github account.

Unfortunately, I could not find the datasheet for S5P4418 processor [Update: here’s S5P4418 user’s manual], but one Chinese company mentions it’s an upgraded version of Exynos 4412, and I’ve passed their comparison table through Google Translate.

 Function

Exynos 4412

S5P4418

   Advantage

I/O Voltage Levels

1.8V

3.3V

No level conversion needed

UART

4

6

Meets more requirements

MEMORY

4x dual channel DDR3

2-channel DDR3

Easier wiring and impedance control

USB HOST

Needs an external PHY

USB2.0 HOST

Eliminate the need for external chip

Display

RGB/MIPI

RGB/MIPI/LVDS

Supports LVDS directly without an external chip

I/O functions

Some I/Os support interrupts

All I/Os support interrutps

Networking

Requires DM9000, which costs more  (12RMB ~ $1.9)

Built-in Gigabit Ethernet, and you can use a 3RMB (~50 cents) chip to support 10/100/1000M Ethernet

Lower cost

NanoPi2 board sells for $32, and you can also purchase a kit with a 7″ resistive LCD for $65. Alternatively, 4.3″ and 7″ can be purchased separately for $25 and $35. Sadly shipping is monstrous, as I was asked for respectively $32 and $65 extra for shipping and handling for the board only and 7″ LCD kit with NanoPi2 board. Both match exactly the costs of the board and kit, so hopefully it’s a temporary mistake.

You can find more details and/or buy the board on NanoPi2 product page, as well as on Andahammer, where people from North America should be able to buy with lower shipping fees.

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Top 10 Antutu Scores of 2015 for Smartphones So Far

October 25th, 2015 1 comment

I’m mainly focusing on Android mini PCs, and not so much on mobile devices. But this year, silicon vendors launched 64-bit ARM processor for TV boxes based on the low power Cortex A53 cores, lowering costs instead of improving performance of their 32-bit ARM processors, as media player don’t usually need very fast processor simply because video decoding is normally handled by the video engine. Two exceptions being Amazon Fire TV 2015 which gets over 51,000 points mostly thanks to MediaTek MT8173‘s two Cortex A72 cores, and Nvidia Shield Android TV box getting over 68,000 points, but sadly these two devices are not (easily) available worldwide yet. But on the mobile space, the race to faster and faster performance is still on, and according to a recent post on Antutu website (in Chinese), the fastest smartphones now reach over 75,000 points in the popular benchmark.

Top_10_Antutu_Benchmark_2015

I had to look up the devices to find out the processor and display resolution for each smartphone:

  • Meizu Pro 5 – Samsung Exynos 7420 with four Cortex-A53 @ 1.5GHz, four Cortex-A57 @ 2.1 GHz, and a Mali-760MP8 GPU. Resolution: 1080 x 1920.
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 5 – Samsung Exynos 7420 with four Cortex-A53 @ 1.5GHz, four Cortex-A57 @ 2.1 GHz, and a Mali-760MP8 GPU. Resolution: 1440 x 2560.
  • Samsung S6 Edge+ – Samsung Exynos 7420 with four Cortex-A53 @ 1.5GHz, four Cortex-A57 @ 2.1 GHz, and a Mali-760MP8 GPU. Resolution: 1440 x 2560.
  • Samsung S6 – Samsung Exynos 7420 with four Cortex-A53 @ 1.5GHz, four Cortex-A57 @ 2.1 GHz, and a Mali-760MP8 GPU. Resolution: 1440 x 2560
  • Samsung S6 Edge – Samsung Exynos 7420 with four Cortex-A53 @ 1.5GHz, four Cortex-A57 @ 2.1 GHz, and a Mali-760MP8 GPU. Resolution: 1440 x 2560
  • LeTV 1 Pro – Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 with four Cortex-A53 @ 1.5 GHz, four  Cortex-A57 @ 2.5? GHz, and an Adreno 430 GPU. Resolution: 1440 x 2560.
  • LeTV 1 MAX – Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 with four Cortex-A53 @ 1.5 GHz, four  Cortex-A57 @ 2.5? GHz, and an Adreno 430 GPU. Resolution: 1440 x 2560.
  • Sony Xperia Z5 – Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 (MSM8994) with four Cortex-A53 @ 1.5 GHz, four  Cortex-A57 @ 2 GHz, and an Adreno 430 GPU. Resolution: 1440 x 2560.
  • Xiaomi Note Pro – Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 (MSM8994) with four Cortex-A53 @ 1.5 GHz, four  Cortex-A57 @ 2 GHz, and an Adreno 430 GPU. Resolution: 1440 x 2560.
  • OnePlus 2 – Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 (MSM8994) with four Cortex-A53 @ 1.56 GHz, four  Cortex-A57 @ 1.82 GHz, and an Adreno 430 GPU

The data mostly comes from gsmarena, except for LeTV smartphones where I had to go to oppomart.

So Samsung Exynos 7420 and Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 shares the top of the charts. There are different versions of Qualcomm 810 processor which might explain the different core frequencies between phones, or it could be that the company making OnePlus 2 decided to lower the frequency to avoid overheating. The 2.5GHz frequency shown for LeTV smartphone is probably because of the source, a Chinese shop, which made up some nice numbers… That’s just what they do…

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Samsung Introduces $250 SmartThings Home Monitoring Kit

October 18th, 2015 No comments

Samsung has recently launched SmartThings Home Monitoring Kit including a SmartThings hub, a motions sensor, two multi-pupose sensors to detect when windows or doors are opened, and a smart outlet for home automation and monitoring via mobile devices.

Samsung_SmartThings_Kit

Some of SmartThings Hub technical specifications:

  • Ethernet for connection to router
  • Communication Protocol – ZigBee, Z-Wave, IP
  • Range – 15 to 40 meters
  • Power Supply – In-wall power adapter with about 10 hours of backup power from 4 included AA batteries
  • Dimensions – 10.67 x 12.45 x 3.3 cm
  • Weight – 218 grams
  • Operating Temperature: 5 to 35°C (Indoor use only)

They’ve decided not to include WiFi, or omitted in the product page, so it would have to be close to your router. The multi-purpose sensors, and motion sensor are powered by a pre-installed CR-2450 battery, while the smart outlet takes 100 to 220V (12A @ 120V max). All three devices communicate with the hub using Zigbee protocol.

SmartThings_AppYou’ll need to download SmartThings app for iOS 7.0 or later, Android 4.0 or later, or Windows Phone 8.1 or later to setup the hub, and manage the devices. The app reviews on the Apple Store are not exactly flattering: “Horrible App!“, “From bad to worse”, “Still an awful app”, while the ones on Google Play are more mixed going from “Can’t believe it’s been released” to “Good App. Bad Battery Use ” and “Overall 2.0 is a big improvement”…

The first time setup and basic usage are explained in the video below.

The hub is also compatible with other Zigbee, Z-wave and IP based products from Samsung, Bose, Schlage, Yale, Cree, Osram Lightify, Honeywell, First Alert, and other brands. The kit does not include a camera, so if you’d like to record videos or take pictures when the motion sensor is activated, you” also need to purchase Samsung SmartCam HD Pro, or other compatible IP cameras.

Somehow large companies never seem to manage a worldwide launch, maybe due to the quantities and logistics involved, and SmartThings Home Kit is no different, as I understand it’s only available in the US for now, either directly from SmartThings website for $249, or via online retailers such as Amazon and Best Buy.  Visit SmartThings.com for more details.

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Samsung Z3 Tizen Smartphone Launched in Russia and India

October 16th, 2015 3 comments

After Samzung Z1 based on Spreadtrum SC7727S processor and running Tizen 2.3, Samsung skipped the Z2, and launched Samsung Z3 Tizen 2.4 smartphone powered by Spreadtrum SC7730S quad core processor in both India and Russia, with the Russian model allegedly adding LTE connectivity.

Samsung_Z3Samsung Z3 specifications:

  • SoC – Spreadtrum SC7730S Quad core ARM Cortex A7 processor @ 1.3 GHz with ARM Mali-400MP2 GPU
  • System Memory – 1GB RAM
  • Storage – 8GB flash + microSD slot (up to 128GB)
  • Display –  5.0” HD Super AMOLED (1280×720)
  • Connectivity – WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0 BLE, GPS,GLONASS
  • Cellular
    • 2x Micro-SIM slots
    • “Indian model” (SM-300H) – WCDMA: B1(2100),B8(900); GSM: GSM850,GSM900,DCS1800,PCS1900; 3G: HSPA+
    • “Russian model” (SM-300F?) – Includes LTE
  • Camera – 8.0MP rear camera with LED Flash (F2.2), 5.0MP front facing camera
  • Video – MP4, M4V, 3GP, 3G2, ASF, AVI, FLV, MKV
  • USB – micro USB 2.0 port
  • Sensors – Accelerometer, Proximity Sensor
  • Battery – 2,600 mAh
  • Dimensions – 70 x 141.6 x 7.9mm
  • Weight – 137g

Tizen_2.4_UI

The phone runs Tizen 2.4, and the company has chosen two different market segments in the countries where the phone launched. Samsung Z3 will sell to consumers for 8,490 Rupees ($130) in India via Snapdeal starting October 21, while the phone is reserved to B2B customers in Russia. You may find a few more details on Samsung (India) Z3 product page.

Via Tizen Experts here and there.

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