3. Next-Gen Chip Technology
Chipmakers cooked up powerful new processors in 2013 that will significantly boost performance in upcoming servers and handhelds in 2014. With Apple getting a jump on the 64-bit ARM mobile processor bandwagon this fall with its own A7 SoC, competitors nipped at the iPhone maker’s heels in 2013. Qualcomm announced its Snapdragon 410 -- a mid-range 64-bit chip sporting four ARM Cortex A53 cores. Samsung has said its Exynos mobile CPUs will be 64-bit and ready in 2014. And not to be outdone, Intel showed off a tablet running on a 64-bit version of the Android OS with an x86-based Bay Trail Atom CPU. In November, Nvidia said it wanted to help build the world's fastest computers with its latest Tesla K40 graphics chip. The Tesla K40 graphics processor delivers 1.43 teraflops of performance and is its fastest supercomputing co-processor to date. Starting later this year, IBM says it will start using Nvidia's Tesla chips in servers with its upcoming 12-core Power8 chips, which have been used in the Watson supercomputers. IBM claims the Power8 chip is up to three times faster than the Power7 -- Watson’s old CPU.