Cortex-A50 Series

Cortex-A50 Series Image
The ARM® Cortex®-A50 Series is the latest range of processors based on the ARMv8-A architecture. The series includes support for the AArch64, a new energy efficient 64-bit execution state that operates alongside an enhanced version of ARM’s existing 32-bit execution state. The Cortex-A50 Series comprises the Cortex-A57 and the Cortex-A53 processors.

These new low power processors will drive the widespread adoption of technology applications ranging from gesture control, augmented reality, mobile gaming, web 2.0 and entrepreneurial business applications, where data is the business.

Both the Cortex-A57 and Cortex-A53 processors can operate independently or be combined into an ARM big.LITTLE processing configuration that enables scalable performance and optimal energy-efficiency.


Cortex-A50 series processors are excellent dual 32-bit and 64-bit processors. They deliver more performance for ARMv7 32-bit code in AArch32 execution state, and offer support for 64-bit data and larger virtual addressing space in AArch64 execution state.

The ARMv8-A architecture allows clean interworking between 32-bit and 64-bit in AArch64 state, enabling a step-by step migration to 64-bit, beginning with 64-bit operating systems running 32-bit ARMv7 applications, migrating to a mix of 32-bit applications and 64-bit applications running in the same system.

With the ARMv8-A architecture, the Cortex-A50 series processors also introduce more advanced SIMD capability, instructions to speed up software cryptography, increased register files, flexible addressing modes, support for tagged pointers, 64k data pages, a new exception model, enhanced cache management and enhanced floating point operations (IEEE754-2008).

Other features include load-acquire and store-release, which are an excellent match for the C++11, C11 and Java memory models, improving performance of thread-safe code by removing the need for explicit memory barrier instructions in many cases. Automatic event signalling enables power-efficient, high-performance spinlocks.

The Cortex-A53 and Cortex-A57 processors also introduce new power saving features such as retention modes and more extensive hierarchical clock gating to automatically save power when all or a portion of the processor is idle. While adding these new capabilities, the Cortex-A50 series processors are fully compatible with 32-bit ARMv7 software.

An obvious reason for 64-bit is the support of more than 4GB of physical memory; however this is achieved in ARMv7’s LPAE extension on Cortex-A15 and Cortex-A7. Why then is 64-bit useful?

In server applications, OS and application software are frequently 64-bit today, so 64-bit pointers for virtual addressing are critical in these applications. Full support of AArch64, in addition to the power efficient ARMv8 architecture and power optimized microarchitectures, make Cortex-A50 series processors well suited to a broad range of applications in efficient low-power servers.

In the desktop environment, a larger virtual address space is important for modern desktop software APIs that may come to rely on having a vast virtual address space for techniques such as memory mapped file I/O and sparse addressing (e.g. for persistent objects). AArch64 also enables efficient 64-bit immediate generation meaning less need for literal pools.

A large program counter relative addressing range (+/-4GB) for efficient data addressing is helpful within shared libraries and position-independent executable. The ARMv8 instruction set, fully supported by the Cortex-A50 series processors, is optimized for clean code generation, with its orthogonal ISA and compiler friendly flexible addressing modes.

Support for 64-bit in ARMv8 will enable ARM processors to become more broadly deployed in server and desktop applications, and will provide future-proof support for the eventual migration of 64-bit operating systems to mobile applications.

The Cortex-A57 and Cortex-A53 processors are the first processors to be based on the ARMv8 architecture extending the performance of 32-bit processing and introducing the world's most energy-efficient 64-bit technology. The breakthrough Cortex-A50 series provides a scalable and flexible solution that will promote innovation and support a wide range of new devices and technologies from smartphones and tablets to network infrastructure and servers.

Both processors can operate independently or be combined into an ARM big.LITTLE™ processing configuration that enables scalable performance AND optimal energy-efficiency. Both processors are fully compatible with extensive ARM software assets, and supported by a comprehensive set of ARM and ARM partner toolkits to enable faster and easier software development.

ARM Cortex-A57 processor:

The Cortex-A57 processor is ARM's most advanced, high-performance application processor.

  • Smartphones are transitioning from content consumption devices to content creation devices. Now that smartphones are able to capture high quality video and photographs, consumers want to edit and share this content, driving the need for further processing power delivered by the Cortex-A57 processor.
  • Content creation is not limited to multi-media, but also documents. A Cortex-A57 processor-based smartphone, wirelessly connected to a screen, keyboard and mouse, delivers a full laptop experience that consumers receive from their typical laptop today.
  • This processor can deliver all the compute capability a typical consumer needs, from replacing your gaming console to your laptop
  • The Cortex-A57 processor efficiently runs legacy ARM 32-bit applications
  • The Cortex-A57 processor features interoperability with ARM Mali™ family graphics processing units (GPUs) for GPU compute applications
  • Optional reliability and scalability features for high-performance enterprise applications
  • The Cortex-A57 processor connects seamlessly to ARM interconnect with up to 16 core configurations with more in the future

ARM Cortex-A53 processor:

The Cortex-A53 processor is ARM's most efficient application processor ever, delivering today's mainstream smartphone experience in a quarter of the power in the respective process nodes.

  • Using ARM's big.LITTLE technology the Cortex-A53 processor will efficiently run your connected life. This connected life will not just be the social media, news and email updates that you receive today, but will also enable devices to be contextually aware and connect to the Internet of things.
  • Contextual awareness is already happening in smartphones today, but with the Cortex-A53 processor 's ultra-efficiency it will allow your smartphone to use its sensor information, calendar, contact information and location-based services to provide relevant information.
  • This processor can deliver the compute power of today's high-end smartphone, in lowest power and area footprint, enabling all-day battery life for typical device uses.
  • Cortex-A53 efficiently runs legacy ARM 32-bit applications
  • Cortex-A53 features cache coherent interoperability with ARM Mali™ family graphics processing units (GPUs) for GPU compute applications
  • Cortex-A53 connects seamlessly to ARM interconnect with up to 16 cores configurations with more in the future
  • Cortex-A53 offers optional reliability and scalability features for high-performance enterprise applications

Processor Cortex-A57 Cortex-A53
Architecture ARMv8 ARMv8
Interrupt Controller Integrated GIC Integrated GIC
L2 Cache Controller Integrated w/ECC Integrated w/ECC
I Cache 48k 8-64k
D Cache 32k 8-64k



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