Mar 13 AT 5:17 PM Taylor Wimberly 43 Comments

Android will have PS3 graphics in 3 years

First, on the topic of games, I have a small update to a story we ran last week. I had been speculating that Epic Games would announce the Unreal Engine for Android and I was completely wrong. Epic unveiled the Unreal Engine for Palm’s webOS and that was it for mobile.

We did however, get a glimpse of future mobile technology at the recent Game Developers Conference.

Imagination Technology, makers of the PowerVR GPU chip that powers the Motorola Droid, said we will definitely have “graphics comparable to the PlayStation 3 in three years”.

They can predict this with certainty because the chips are already being designed and it takes about three years for them to reach an actual handset. The new chipsets will be focused on multiprocessors and Imagination Technology claims you could theoretically have three or four in your phone.

Only Motorola produces Android phones with PowerVR chips inside, but we expect more handset makers to adopt them as performance increases. (HTC is also working with PowerVR.)

Advancements in mobile graphics technology is exciting because we are finally starting to see HDMI out on upcoming phones. Users could essentially carry around a high powered gaming device in their pocket that would easily connect to a HD TV.

Additional improvements are also in the pipes for current PowerVR chips on the market right now. A possible software-based update could bring Flash acceleration (up to 300% performance boost) and OpenCL support (which utilizes the GPU for help out in general purpose computing).

For a quick demo of what PowerVR is working on right now, check out this GDC video from PocketNow.

Source: Gizmodo

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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  • http://Website KaLanGO

    Interesting…
    Dont know if you guys see this:
    Video:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SIkb_kDbrRE
    Website:
    http://blog.ilomilo.com/
    Its an new graphics ship from Qualcomm running this game on Android 2.1 using OpenglES 2.0 (with the help of Snapdragon processing)…
    Taking this as base, i say ps3 graphics in less than 3 years…

  • http://Website Hans

    Holy crap! That’s awesome. Hopefully the batteries could take it.

    • Killa

      I’m sure that if they can come out with a chip that advanced in three years, then they can come out with a battery that can handle it.

      • http://Website P.K.

        This is not obvious at all. We see more and more powerful devices virtually every year as technology progresses steadily here. There is hardly any progress in power storage area and that’s why heavily used modern devices last just hours. All you can do is make batteries bigger or make chips more power efficient while the point is to squeeze much more power in the same volume.

        • http://Website Derek

          You’re very right. Find ways to increase the energy density in mobile batteries is going to be the most difficult part. The rate of increase of energy density in batteries is being outpaced badly by the rate of increase of power consumption and ability of mobile cpu’s and gpu’s.

          Who cares if it outputs PS3 graphics if the battery only lasts for 15 mins while doing so. OR you have to recharge your phone 3 times during the day.

          • Killa

            Some people would probably care because that would mean that your battery would wear out a lot faster. Meaning you would have to replace it a lot sooner.

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  • http://Website mikeyDroid

    Um.. sick? Chop that time in half tho ;)

  • http://www.technogasms.com Sean Riley

    I absolutely believe that pace, the only thing that seems a little funny is that the ps3

    • http://www.technogasms.com Sean Riley

      may still be the top Sony console in 3 years.

  • http://www.typhon4android.org/ Mike Leahy

    I am curious about any back room dealings in this case such as how much did Palm pay Epic to create the demo for them and did Google bid too low or not at all.. I’m guessing the not at all part, but this is just conjecture. ;P

    Hey post about the Java GL2 bridge Mario made this weekend.. It’s just as exciting for the rest of us Java folks.. Ok I’ll go back and make a post in the NDK thread..

    It’s no surprise that computing power is going to advance in that manner. as mentioned OMAP 4 is going to be a huge leap. It will be interesting to see how high individual processor speeds for mobile devices will go before the multicore race explodes.

    Of course it may be time to short sell any stock in personal mini pocket heater companies; I hear they are going the way of the GPS nav companies.. ;P

  • http://www.droidgamers.com ExtremeT

    Ps3 quality graphics on Android phones is definitely something I’m looking forward too. Just a shame that not much else was announced in relation to Android at GDC =/

  • http://www.mattdemers.com MattDemers

    Colour me skeptical, but 3 years is too far away for me to start getting hyped. More likely is that this company is just trying to grab a cheap headline with an outlandish quote, which no one will remember/hold them to when they don’t produce.

  • http://Website Jocke

    Imagination Technology, makers of the PowerVR GPU chip that powers the Motorola Droid, said we will definitely have “graphics comparable to the PlayStation 3 in three years”.
    I believe it when I see it.

  • stalker

    Does Nexus one have PowerVR chip ?

  • http://Website Herman

    That man is a liar.

    “Theoritically it’s possible”, means it’s not going to happen for at least ten years. He just wants to say something that will make people go nuts.

    In three years we will have Wii-graphics on android, if we’re lucky.

  • http://Website Androidawg

    Question is, where will PS3 and Iphone be in 3 years?
    Will Android have closed the gap by then?

  • http://Website Derek

    Well, these chips wont only be in Android phones. They’ll also be in iphones as well. The iphones use the power vr gpu’s as well. Also, how much battery power will these require to put out PS3 level graphics? Playing a 3D game now really taxes the battery, cant imagine how much one of those will.

  • http://www.typhon4android.org/ Mike Leahy

    @P.K.
    >There is hardly any progress in power storage area and that’s why heavily used modern devices last just hours.

    I agree.. I’m definitely interested to see how power storage keeps up with the mobile arms race.

    @ExtremeT
    >Just a shame that not much else was announced in relation to Android at GDC =/

    Next GDC should be a different story though that is for sure.

    @MattDemers
    >Colour me skeptical, but 3 years is too far away for me to start getting hyped.

    This is a very fair assessment. Progress will be made. I don’t see why the graphic tech won’t have similar capabilities, but I’m not convinced the total package or say destructible environments and lots of physics and and AI like a full PS3 game will be possible. Graphic demos will look nice, but the whole game experience found on PS3 is not as likely to fit in the palm of ones hand in 3 years.

    I’m just excited that the OMAP 4 series paired with a PowerVR GPU _may_ be up to 5 times as fast as current gen. If they can hit that mark _next year_ we’ll see what 3 years from now can bring.

    For general non-scientific benchmarks when I run graphics intensive apps between 1st gen Android devices and 2nd I’ve noticed about a 2-3 times performance boost. Things are still fill rate limited regardless. I’d be reasonably pleased with a 3-5 times increase for next years Android model.

    @Stalker:
    >Does Nexus one have PowerVR chip?

    It is the AMD z430 and it’s not as good as the PowerVR SGX GPU in the Droid. Qualcomm bought AMD’s mobile division a year or so ago. I’m really curious if Qualcomm will be able to keep up with next years mobile GPU tech.

    @Androidawg
    >Question is, where will PS3 and Iphone be in 3 years?
    Will Android have closed the gap by then?

    The PS3 will be the same unless there is a PS4. ;P The middleware on the PS3 will likely be more advanced in 3 years. The iPhone/Apple will essentially have access to the same GPU tech available to any Android manufacturer though it will be interesting to see if Apple goes with a custom designed ARM processor and how well it will perform.

    Things will get faster and we’ll see.. I do think it’s more of a vacuous marketing statement, but consider my interest piqued if next years harvest proves bountiful.

    • http://www.droidgamers.com ExtremeT

      Yeah next year’s GDC should be a whole lot better in relation to Android. I actually think ‘ps3 quality graphics’ isn’t far off. I think 3 years is a bit long actually. This video does sort of look like a grab for headlines but at the same time with games like Ilomilo and the demo video I saw of Unreal running on the iPhone from GDC (which looked awesome already for such early release), a year and a half sound like a better estimate of time for graphics like that.

    • http://www.droidgamers.com ExtremeT

      btw OMAP4 looks wicked from what I’ve seen already of it.

  • http://Website KaLanGO

    Awesome…someone erased my comment…
    i wonder why tho…

  • http://Website Usman

    Ok..I have to say the title of this story is horrendous. Who cares if Android will have PS3 like graphics in three years!? So will other OS’s..heck, as much as I dislike Apple, they’ll probably have such graphics much earlier!

    • http://www.droidgamers.com ExtremeT

      I highly doubt that very much actually.

  • http://www.android-tr.com/forum gokberk

    Hahaha it’s funny :)
    I can’t believe that

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  • http://Website james braselton

    hi there wow i bet cellphones will surpass ps3 becuase apple has a 4g iphone comeing out 2012 with 128 gb flash drive not hard drive with game controles 1.2 ghz cpu 48 hour battery i want a 128 gb ssd ps3 before year 2020 i would up the price up too $300 over the slower hdd you can now buy a 128 gb ssd for $229 with a 250 mb/s read and 170 mb/s write speeds so a ps3 in a pocket should use at least 32 gb ssd

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  • http://www.hcgamingnews.wordpress.com Sravan

    We already have it, ( albeit not for ANDROID ) – Sony’s NGP. :D

  • http://www.facebook.com/snippetme lola pixie

    I’m not sure why but this website is loading extremely slow for me. Is anyone else having this issue or is it a issue on my end? I’ll check back later on and see if the problem still exists.

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  1. KaLanGOGuest 5 years ago

    Interesting…
    Dont know if you guys see this:
    Video:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SIkb_kDbrRE
    Website:
    http://blog.ilomilo.com/
    Its an new graphics ship from Qualcomm running this game on Android 2.1 using OpenglES 2.0 (with the help of Snapdragon processing)…
    Taking this as base, i say ps3 graphics in less than 3 years…

  2. HansGuest 5 years ago

    Holy crap! That’s awesome. Hopefully the batteries could take it.

    • I’m sure that if they can come out with a chip that advanced in three years, then they can come out with a battery that can handle it.

      • P.K.Guest 5 years ago

        This is not obvious at all. We see more and more powerful devices virtually every year as technology progresses steadily here. There is hardly any progress in power storage area and that’s why heavily used modern devices last just hours. All you can do is make batteries bigger or make chips more power efficient while the point is to squeeze much more power in the same volume.

        • DerekGuest 5 years ago

          You’re very right. Find ways to increase the energy density in mobile batteries is going to be the most difficult part. The rate of increase of energy density in batteries is being outpaced badly by the rate of increase of power consumption and ability of mobile cpu’s and gpu’s.

          Who cares if it outputs PS3 graphics if the battery only lasts for 15 mins while doing so. OR you have to recharge your phone 3 times during the day.

          • Some people would probably care because that would mean that your battery would wear out a lot faster. Meaning you would have to replace it a lot sooner.

  3. Android to have PS3 graphics in 3 years : White LotusGuest 5 years ago

    [...] I ran across this interesting article today. If Google’s Android OS can pull off these kind of graphics in [...]

  4. mikeyDroidGuest 5 years ago

    Um.. sick? Chop that time in half tho ;)

  5. I absolutely believe that pace, the only thing that seems a little funny is that the ps3

  6. I am curious about any back room dealings in this case such as how much did Palm pay Epic to create the demo for them and did Google bid too low or not at all.. I’m guessing the not at all part, but this is just conjecture. ;P

    Hey post about the Java GL2 bridge Mario made this weekend.. It’s just as exciting for the rest of us Java folks.. Ok I’ll go back and make a post in the NDK thread..

    It’s no surprise that computing power is going to advance in that manner. as mentioned OMAP 4 is going to be a huge leap. It will be interesting to see how high individual processor speeds for mobile devices will go before the multicore race explodes.

    Of course it may be time to short sell any stock in personal mini pocket heater companies; I hear they are going the way of the GPS nav companies.. ;P

  7. ExtremeTGuest 5 years ago

    Ps3 quality graphics on Android phones is definitely something I’m looking forward too. Just a shame that not much else was announced in relation to Android at GDC =/

  8. Colour me skeptical, but 3 years is too far away for me to start getting hyped. More likely is that this company is just trying to grab a cheap headline with an outlandish quote, which no one will remember/hold them to when they don’t produce.

  9. JockeGuest 5 years ago

    Imagination Technology, makers of the PowerVR GPU chip that powers the Motorola Droid, said we will definitely have “graphics comparable to the PlayStation 3 in three years”.
    I believe it when I see it.

  10. Does Nexus one have PowerVR chip ?

  11. HermanGuest 5 years ago

    That man is a liar.

    “Theoritically it’s possible”, means it’s not going to happen for at least ten years. He just wants to say something that will make people go nuts.

    In three years we will have Wii-graphics on android, if we’re lucky.

  12. AndroidawgGuest 5 years ago

    Question is, where will PS3 and Iphone be in 3 years?
    Will Android have closed the gap by then?

  13. DerekGuest 5 years ago

    Well, these chips wont only be in Android phones. They’ll also be in iphones as well. The iphones use the power vr gpu’s as well. Also, how much battery power will these require to put out PS3 level graphics? Playing a 3D game now really taxes the battery, cant imagine how much one of those will.

  14. @P.K.
    >There is hardly any progress in power storage area and that’s why heavily used modern devices last just hours.

    I agree.. I’m definitely interested to see how power storage keeps up with the mobile arms race.

    @ExtremeT
    >Just a shame that not much else was announced in relation to Android at GDC =/

    Next GDC should be a different story though that is for sure.

    @MattDemers
    >Colour me skeptical, but 3 years is too far away for me to start getting hyped.

    This is a very fair assessment. Progress will be made. I don’t see why the graphic tech won’t have similar capabilities, but I’m not convinced the total package or say destructible environments and lots of physics and and AI like a full PS3 game will be possible. Graphic demos will look nice, but the whole game experience found on PS3 is not as likely to fit in the palm of ones hand in 3 years.

    I’m just excited that the OMAP 4 series paired with a PowerVR GPU _may_ be up to 5 times as fast as current gen. If they can hit that mark _next year_ we’ll see what 3 years from now can bring.

    For general non-scientific benchmarks when I run graphics intensive apps between 1st gen Android devices and 2nd I’ve noticed about a 2-3 times performance boost. Things are still fill rate limited regardless. I’d be reasonably pleased with a 3-5 times increase for next years Android model.

    @Stalker:
    >Does Nexus one have PowerVR chip?

    It is the AMD z430 and it’s not as good as the PowerVR SGX GPU in the Droid. Qualcomm bought AMD’s mobile division a year or so ago. I’m really curious if Qualcomm will be able to keep up with next years mobile GPU tech.

    @Androidawg
    >Question is, where will PS3 and Iphone be in 3 years?
    Will Android have closed the gap by then?

    The PS3 will be the same unless there is a PS4. ;P The middleware on the PS3 will likely be more advanced in 3 years. The iPhone/Apple will essentially have access to the same GPU tech available to any Android manufacturer though it will be interesting to see if Apple goes with a custom designed ARM processor and how well it will perform.

    Things will get faster and we’ll see.. I do think it’s more of a vacuous marketing statement, but consider my interest piqued if next years harvest proves bountiful.

    • ExtremeTGuest 5 years ago

      Yeah next year’s GDC should be a whole lot better in relation to Android. I actually think ‘ps3 quality graphics’ isn’t far off. I think 3 years is a bit long actually. This video does sort of look like a grab for headlines but at the same time with games like Ilomilo and the demo video I saw of Unreal running on the iPhone from GDC (which looked awesome already for such early release), a year and a half sound like a better estimate of time for graphics like that.

    • ExtremeTGuest 5 years ago

      btw OMAP4 looks wicked from what I’ve seen already of it.

  15. KaLanGOGuest 5 years ago

    Awesome…someone erased my comment…
    i wonder why tho…

  16. UsmanGuest 5 years ago

    Ok..I have to say the title of this story is horrendous. Who cares if Android will have PS3 like graphics in three years!? So will other OS’s..heck, as much as I dislike Apple, they’ll probably have such graphics much earlier!

  17. gokberkGuest 5 years ago

    Hahaha it’s funny :)
    I can’t believe that

  18. Podcast today, come join us live at 3 PM ET – Android and MeGuest 5 years ago

    [...] PS3 graphics – PS3 graphics in your pocket? Say whaaaat? It could be a reality in a couple years and we can hardly wait. [...]

  19. james braseltonGuest 5 years ago

    hi there wow i bet cellphones will surpass ps3 becuase apple has a 4g iphone comeing out 2012 with 128 gb flash drive not hard drive with game controles 1.2 ghz cpu 48 hour battery i want a 128 gb ssd ps3 before year 2020 i would up the price up too $300 over the slower hdd you can now buy a 128 gb ssd for $229 with a 250 mb/s read and 170 mb/s write speeds so a ps3 in a pocket should use at least 32 gb ssd

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  24. SravanGuest 4 years ago

    We already have it, ( albeit not for ANDROID ) – Sony’s NGP. :D

  25. lola pixieGuest 4 years ago

    I’m not sure why but this website is loading extremely slow for me. Is anyone else having this issue or is it a issue on my end? I’ll check back later on and see if the problem still exists.

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