If you were impressed by the gaming capabilities of the iPhone 5s’ A7 chip, the next iPhone might very well blow your mind. Imagination Technologies, the company behind the graphics portion of Apple’s processor, has revealed a new build of its graphics architecture that will allow for more realistic lighting and shadows than ever.
Announced at Game Developers Conference 2014, Imagination Technologies’ new PowerVR “Wizard” cores will allow for realistic reflections and transparencies that were “previously unachievable in a mobile form factor.” Wizard GPUs will take advantage of ray tracing, which is a graphics generation technique that simulates encounters between virtual objects. The PowerVR GR6500 will be the first core in the Wizard family, allowing for ray tracing at 300 million rays per second.
If this technology comes to a future iPhone, mobile gamers can look forward to playing more graphically rich versions of their favorite games. The Wizard family is meant to give developers an easy transition from the previous version of PowerVR, allowing creators to “bring a new level of quality and enhanced realism to their apps and games.” This technology should streamline the GPU’s workload, giving that portion of the processor more freedom to create more detailed lighting and shadow effects.
Designed for “a broad range of consumer and mobile platforms, as well as gaming consoles and mainstream gaming PCs,” the PowerVR Wizard GR6500 is available for licencing now. We don’t know if this graphics technology will make its way to the iPhone 6 or a future Apple handset, but it’s likely given Imagination’s relationship with the smartphone giant.
The Wizard family holds a ton of potential for mobile gaming, as iPhone 5s titles such as “Infinity Blade III” and “Deus Ex: The Fall” already boast rich environments with dynamic lighting and shadows. With even more power behind them, these games could someday rival their big brothers on PC and consoles.