ARM predicts 64-bit phones with LTE will cost $70 in 2015

armARM has 15 predictions for 2015. The company is best known for the basic design of processors that power the majority of smartphones, tablets and all sorts of appliances, so it has its finger on the pulse of technology.

For smartphones the company is predicting that half of the units that will ship this year will use the new ARMv8 64-bit instruction set. Another prediction pegs the price of a 64-bit, LTE-enabled smartphone at “under $70,” so it flagships will certainly not be the only devices driving the adoption of new tech.

Biometrics will be huge and will mesh with increased focus on hardware-based security features. That’s good news since ARM is predicting a huge surge of mobile payments as more and more people opt to replace their credit card with a smartphone.

Wearables will be another defining feature of 2015, but they must deliver relevant info to succeed. The company predicts that the buzz will start shifting away from wearables and onto robotics. The Internet of Things industry will mature, leading to common standards and a lot of competitive products from Chinese vendors.

ARM envisions mobile playing a key part in healthcare in rural areas – smartphones and smartwatches can already track your pulse and blood-oxygen level and we’re yet to see what the 2015 flagships will add to the biometric sensor array.

Competition will heat up as device manufacturers and even Internet companies acquire semiconductor firms to better integrate into their products. ARM sees wireless charging becoming more important and makers will improve both design and the efficiency of such products.

That’s the bright future that’s just ahead of us, according to ARM, and of course the company’s tech will power a great deal of it. How such optimism survives its encounter with reality remains to be seen – you can’t get solid LTE coverage everywhere and the millions of new phones on the network won’t make things any easier.

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