An unnamed Qualcomm employee says Apple’s iPhone 5s with its 64-bit A7 processor was a “hit in the gut,” even though a Qualcomm official put on a brave public face, saying at the time that there was no consumer benefit from the chip. The company later back-pedaled on those remarks, as the executive who made them was reassigned.
“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.”
The unnamed source says no one thought a 64-bit chip was essential, until Apple introduced theirs. Then all the phone makers wanted one. “Apple kicked everybody in the balls with this. It’s being downplayed, but it set off panic in the industry.”
Apple has since gone on to put the A7 in their iPad Air, and Retina iPad mini devices, while both Samsung and Qualcomm have announced they’ll be releasing 64-bit processors in the future.