A12 Bionic chip in iPhone XS as fast as Skylake processors, confirm benchmarks

During iPhone XS launch event, Apple claimed that the new A12 Bionic chip is considerably faster than A11 Bionic. AnandTech put these claims to test and ran a bunch of benchmarks on the new iPhone XS to see exactly how fast the new A12 system-on-chip is.

A12 Bionic

In their extensive testing of the A12 Bionic chip, AnandTech found that its success was largely attributed to its better memory management system which is a major improvements over the A11.¬†The review talks about how the A11 and A12 are on par with moderately-clocked Skylake processors, Intel’s 6th Generation processors, when it came to single-threaded performances. This is quite the feat and as technology progresses, Apple’s chips would soon catch up to single-thread performance of Intel’s 8th Generation Coffee Lake Processors.

AnandTech dived into how the processor performed in various real-world scenarios and applications, and each benchmark put the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max at the top of the scoreboard. One of the first benchmarks run on the system was Speedometer 2.0 which is a standard JavaScript benchmark. This is basically a web browser test for opening sites that rely heavily on JavaScript.

The iPhone XS Setting a new Score in Speedometer 2.0

WebXPRT was another browser based benchmark with processing tasks added into the mix. It is more intensive on the CPU as it has other bells and whistles added in aside from testing WebView. You can see once again that the iPhone XS was the clear winner.

The iPhone XS Setting a new record in WebXPRT

When we come to GPU performance, the crown does go to the Snapdragon 845 processor as you can see the OnePlus 6, LG G7 and the Samsung Galaxy S9+ are ahead of the pack. The iPhone XS and XS Max manage to hold a steady second position on the board in terms of peak and sustained scores. The 3DMark Physics benchmark stresses both the GPU and CPU, and this is where the iPhone XS manages to hold its own in second place against premiere Android flagship phones. iPhone X and Snapdragon 845 devices all hold similar scores here.

In the 3DMark Physics Benchmark the A12 Bionic is a good second place

Lastly, in the 3DMark Slingshot benchmark, we see the prowess of the Snapdragon 845 once more, with the A12 Bionic holding its own in second place, with Snapdragon 835 and A11 based phones showing similar results.

The A12 once again is a close second to the Snapdragon 845

There is however an interesting turn-around for the A12 Bionic when we come to pure GPU intensive benchmarks in the form of GFX Bench, which show the true potential of the chip.

The iPhone XS and XS Max Dominating the Benchmarks

As the various tests show, iPhone XS and the XS Max have double the FPS when compared to Snapdragon 845 processors, in both peak and sustained performance. 3DMark tests both GPU and CPU, which is why there could be a short-fall in numbers in that department, but when it comes to pure GPU performance, GFXBench gives a¬†different result. This could also be attributed to the close nature of iOS, which doesn’t allow benchmarks to run as like they can on Android.

No matter how you look at it, A12 Bionic has extended Apple’s lead for the fastest smartphone processor in the market. Competitors have just started catching up with A11 while Apple has moved on. It will be interesting to see whether Apple will include the new A12 chips in upcoming iPad Pro models or whether they will opt for an A11x variant instead.