Apple A12 Bionic
Apple A12.jpg
General information
LaunchedSeptember 12, 2018; 4 years ago (2018-09-12)
DiscontinuedOctober 18, 2022; 2 months ago (2022-10-18)
Designed byApple Inc.
Common manufacturer(s)
Product codeAPL1W81[2]
Max. CPU clock rateto 2.49[3] GHz
Cache
L1 cache128 KB instruction, 128 KB data
L2 cache8 MB
Architecture and classification
ApplicationMobile
Technology node7 nm[4][5]
Microarchitecture"Vortex" and "Tempest"
Instruction setAarch64; ARMv8.3-A
Physical specifications
Transistors
  • 6.9 billion
Cores
GPU(s)Apple-designed 4 core "Apple G11P"[4][6]
Products, models, variants
Variant(s)
History
PredecessorApple A11
SuccessorApple A13

The Apple A12 Bionic is a 64-bit ARM-based system on a chip (SoC) designed by Apple Inc.[7] It first appeared in the iPhone XS and XS Max, iPhone XR, iPad Air (3rd generation), iPad Mini (5th generation), 8th generation iPad and Apple TV 4K (2nd generation).[7][5] Apple states that the two high-performance cores are 15% faster and 50% more energy-efficient than the Apple A11's, and the four high-efficiency cores use 50% less power than the A11's.[7][6] It is the first mass-market system on a chip to be built using the 7 nm process.[8]

Design

The Apple A12 SoC features an Apple-designed 64-bit ARMv8.3-A six-core CPU, with two high-performance cores called Vortex, running at 2.49 GHz, and four energy-efficient cores called Tempest.[4][5] The Vortex cores are a 7-wide decode out-of-order superscalar design, while the Tempest cores are a 3-wide decode out-of-order superscalar design. Like the A11's Mistral cores, the Tempest cores are based on Apple's Swift cores from the Apple A6.[9]

The A12 also integrates an Apple-designed four-core graphics processing unit (GPU) with 50% faster graphics performance than the A11.[4][7] The A12 includes dedicated neural network hardware that Apple calls a "Next-generation Neural Engine."[10] This neural network hardware has eight cores[6] and can perform up to 5 trillion 8-bit operations per second.[4][5] Unlike the A11's Neural Engine, third-party apps can access the A12's Neural Engine.[11]

The A12 is manufactured by TSMC[1] using a 7 nm[5] FinFET process, the first to ship in a consumer product,[4][1] containing 6.9 billion transistors.[1] The die size of the A12 is 83.27 mm2, 5% smaller than the A11.[12] It is manufactured in a package on package (PoP) together with 4 GiB of LPDDR4X memory in the iPhone XS[2] and XS Max[12] and 3 GB of LPDDR4X memory in the iPhone XR, the iPad Air (2019), the 5th generation iPad mini, and the iPad (2020).[13] The ARMv8.3 instruction set it supports brings a significant security improvement in the form of pointer authentication, which mitigates exploitation techniques such as those involving memory corruption, Jump-Oriented-Programming, and Return-Oriented-Programming.[14]

The A12 has video codec encoding support for HEVC and H.264. It has decoding support for HEVC, H.264, MPEG‑4 Part 2, and Motion JPEG.[15]

Die Block Comparison (mm²)[16]
SoC A12 (7 nm) A11 (10 nm)
Total Die 83.27 87.66
Big Core 2.07 2.68
Small Core 0.43 0.53
CPU Complex (incl. cores) 11.90 14.48
GPU Core 3.23 4.43
GPU Total 14.88 15.28
NPU 5.79 1.83

Products that include the Apple A12 Bionic

Gallery

Apple A12 SoC on iPhone XR main logic board.
Apple A12 SoC on iPhone XR main logic board.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d Summers, Nick (September 12, 2018). "Apple's A12 Bionic is the first 7-nanometer smartphone chip". Engadget. Archived from the original on September 13, 2018. Retrieved September 12, 2018.
  2. ^ a b "iPhone XS and XS Max Teardown". iFixit. September 21, 2018. Archived from the original on December 2, 2019. Retrieved September 21, 2018.
  3. ^ "iPhone XS Benchmarks - Geekbench Browser". Geekbench. Archived from the original on October 18, 2018. Retrieved September 22, 2018.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Smith, Ryan (September 12, 2018). "Apple Announces the 2018 iPhones: iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, & iPhone XR". AnandTech. Archived from the original on September 13, 2018. Retrieved September 12, 2018.
  5. ^ a b c d e "iPhone Xs and iPhone Xs Max bring the best and biggest displays to iPhone" (Press release). Apple. September 12, 2018. Archived from the original on April 27, 2019. Retrieved September 12, 2018.
  6. ^ a b c d "A12 Bionic". Apple. September 12, 2018. Archived from the original on November 16, 2018. Retrieved September 12, 2018.
  7. ^ a b c d "Apple introduces iPhone XR" (Press release). Apple. September 12, 2018. Archived from the original on March 27, 2019. Retrieved September 12, 2018.
  8. ^ Shankland, Stephen. "Apple's A12 Bionic CPU for the new iPhone XS is ahead of the industry moving to 7nm chip manufacturing tech". CNET. Archived from the original on September 16, 2018. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  9. ^ Frumusanu, Andrei. "The iPhone XS & XS Max Review: Unveiling the Silicon Secrets". AnandTech. Archived from the original on January 26, 2021. Retrieved January 27, 2019.
  10. ^ "iPhone XS - Technical Specification". Apple Inc. September 12, 2018. Archived from the original on January 4, 2019. Retrieved September 12, 2018.
  11. ^ Frumusanu, Andrei (October 5, 2018). "The iPhone XS & XS Max Review: Unveiling the Silicon Secrets". AnandTech. Archived from the original on January 26, 2021. Retrieved February 2, 2019.
  12. ^ a b Yang, Daniel; Wegner, Stacy (September 21, 2018). "Apple iPhone Xs Max Teardown". TechInsights. Archived from the original on April 15, 2019. Retrieved September 21, 2018.
  13. ^ "iPhone XR Teardown". iFixit. October 26, 2018. Archived from the original on March 21, 2019. Retrieved October 30, 2018.
  14. ^ Levin, Jonathan (September 15, 2018). "iPhone Xs, Xr... And, one more thing..." NewOSXBook.com. Archived from the original on October 10, 2018. Retrieved September 15, 2018.
  15. ^ "iPhone XS - Technical Specifications". support.apple.com. Archived from the original on October 24, 2021. Retrieved October 24, 2021.
  16. ^ Frumusanu, Andrei. "The iPhone XS & XS Max Review: Unveiling the Silicon Secrets". AnandTech. Archived from the original on January 26, 2021. Retrieved February 2, 2019.
Preceded byApple A11 Bionic Apple A12 Bionic 2018 Succeeded byApple A13 Bionic