The Mali 400 in the Samsung Galaxy S III has already proven to be a solid GPU, and now ARM has announced its second-generation 600 series Mali chips that plan to take mobile graphics processing even further. The company claims that the three new models — which include the quad-core T624 and the eight-core scalable T628 and T678 GPUs — will increase performance by 50 percent without drawing any extra power. According to Engadget, the second generation chips will even be able to handle "console-class gaming" and 4K and 8K videos, all while keeping smartphone, tablet, and smart TV UIs running smoothly.
To achieve this level of performance, ARM has introduced Adaptive Scalabe Texture Compression (ASTC), a versatile codec that standardizes graphics coding across multiple platforms. Adopted by the Khronos Group, ASTC technology will be available royalty-free, which should help increase developer support. Unfortunately, we don't know exactly when the second generation Mali GPUs will hit the market, although Hexus reports that we should start seeing them some time next year.