But will breakthrough be enough to counter slowdown in smartphone market?
UK chip designer, Imagination Technologies, claims to have raised the bar in ray traced graphics with its new Wizard architecture said to offer “cinematic realism” for mobile level devices upwards. The Wizard cores are said to provide immersive games and apps with more real-life dynamic lighting models allowing advanced lighting effects, dynamic soft shadows, and life-like reflections and transparencies, previously unachievable in a mobile form factor. PowerVR Wizard Ray Tracing IP is also said to be highly scalable, making it appealing to many other markets beyond mobile. Commented Imagination CEO Hossein Yassaie, “Our PowerVR GPUs have played a key role in driving the creation of entirely new categories of mobile devices and now we are changing the game again by bringing the next level of realism to mobile and consumer devices.”
Yassaie continued, “Our ray tracing IP is here, and it’s ready for our licensees and developers to begin creating a new wave of immersive and exciting PowerVR-based consumer experiences.”
Enabling ray tracing capability in consumer devices is said to have required a fundamental breakthrough by Imagination in the algorithms used within ray tracing, as well as the careful addition of optimised fixed function blocks in the GPU.
This allows ray tracing operations to be performed within the power consumption and bandwidth budgets of current mainstream consumer devices.
Imagination’s breakthrough could bring a much needed fillip to the firm’s share price, which has been in the doldrums for much of the past six months.
That’s after the chip designer admitted that a slowdown in smartphones sales meant that shipments of its technology were behind expectations.
In London last night [18th March 2014] the price stood at around 164 pence, having been as high as 344 pence last September.
In early trading this morning the stock was up nearly 6 per cent on news of Imagination’s latest technology.