Apple's 64-bit A7 processor was a blow to the corporate guts at Qualcomm, according to unnamed sources who spoke with Dan Lyons, the former BusinessWeek columnist made famous as the Fake Steve Jobs. Those sources said that Apple's first-mover advancement with a 64-bit processor has thrown the industry into turmoil.
“The 64-bit Apple chip hit us in the gut,” says the Qualcomm employee. “Not just us, but everyone, really. We were slack-jawed, and stunned, and unprepared. It’s not that big a performance difference right now, since most current software won’t benefit. But in Spinal Tap terms it’s like, 32 more, and now everyone wants it.”
TMO's Dramatic Reenactment of Qualcomm Receiving the News
Contrast this to the company's initial public reaction, when Qualcomm's Chief Marketing Officer, Anand Chandrasekher called the 64-bit A7 a "marketing gimmick." Mr. Chandrasekher was reassigned shortly thereafter, and Qualcomm publicly disavowed the insult, but Dan Lyons' sources suggest that the A7 really put everyone on massive mega monkey tilt.
“Apple kicked everybody in the balls with this," the source said. "It’s being downplayed, but it set off panic in the industry.”
He added, "The roadmap for 64-bit was nowhere close to Apple’s, since no one thought it was that essential. The evolution was going to be steady. Sure, it’s neat, it’s the future, but it’s not really essential for conditions now.”
So far, Apple's A7 processor has made its way into the iPhone and the iPad, and benchmarks have found that it's fast, and that apps written to take advantage of it are even faster. It's also becoming ever more apparent that Apple's first mover status is giving the company a significant heads up on its competitors, including competitor Samsung which has been left just as flat footed as Qualcomm.
I think as move further along, we're also going to see that it will allow Apple to leverage its whole widget model—where it controls the hardware and software of its devices—even more than it has been able to so far.
Image made with help from Shutterstock.