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Tom's Hardware's AMA With Qualcomm, In Its Entirety

Qualcomm On The Desktop, Krait 400, And Vellamo

Q. Also, if the S4 Pro supports it, why doesn't the Nexus 4 work with LTE anymore?

A. That'd be a question for the OEM.

Q. Do you have any plans to expand to desktop CPUs?

A. While we've not announced any specific plans for desktop CPUs, we've launched a Windows RT tablet based on our Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and have announced support for Windows RT in our latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processors.

Q. In regards to 3D hardware acceleration, where do you see Qualcomm concentrating their efforts? Will the push continue to concentrate mostly on efficiency/performance-per-watt, or do you foresee resources being dedicated at least in part to a more game-centric SoC that puts raw performance over efficiency/battery life?

A. We differ from other competitor chips in that we offer a comprehensive solution (AP, modem, connectivity, RF, PMIC, etc), our own GPU design with modern API support, our own CPU designs based on a balance of high performance and ultra low power, modem maturity (performance, multimode integration (7 modes), RF and connectivity integration), and significant performance per mW advantage. We always look at both vectors (performance and power) with regards to any of our IP blocks.

Q. What does your new Krait 400 architecture bring to the table over designs like ARM's Cortex-A15 and Apple's Swift?

A. Our Krait 400 is our latest custom-built CPU architecture that can be clocked up to 2.3GHz and fabricated on a 28nm Hpm process node. Our strategy encompasses the CPU but we also innovate on the other 80-85% of technology content that is critical to delivering great mobile experiences. Only Qualcomm technologies, Inc. purpose builds our own GPUs, DSPs, multimode modems, connectivity and CPUs and integrates them into balanced, high-performance, low-power systems.

Q. The issue with AnTuTu seemed to be a lack of attention to the x86 ISA. At the same time, Qualcomm has its Vellamo benchmark suite. What work went into that test to ensure Intel’s architecture is evaluated fairly, and that Qualcomm isn’t favored automatically?

Vellamo includes industry and reviewer (Tom's hardware included)-recognized benchmarks in it's results. Tests are device and processor neutral. Please check out the full list here (http://www.quicinc.com/vellamo/test-descriptions/).

Q. How interconnected are Qualcomm SoC design teams and your OEM partners? For example, Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processors are standard for Windows Phone 8. How much involvement did Microsoft have in the development of the S4?

A. We work closely with all our partners on both hardware and software design and testing. OEMs can take advantage of the featured available on Qualcomm Snapdragon processors to optimize and customize their products.

Q. As the ever increasing demand for mobile broadband bandwidth increases for consumers on portable devices, what innovations is Qualcomm looking toward in order to continue to increase mobile device bandwidth on it's current astronomical trajectory toward massive amounts of data transfer?

A. Here's some background from the source directly for your second question around Windows Phone compatible hardware. (http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/02/09/building-windows-for-the-arm-processor-architecture.aspx)