Oh my! Look what ARMed processors/SoCs they’re putting into smartphones for 2016:
- 8 to 10 cores,
- a variety of clocks from 1gHz or so to 2.5gHz,
- a variety of cores for different loads: A53, A57, and A72,
- 14-20nm details, and
I’d thought the current technology (2015) was definitely good enough to replace Beast. It’s possible I will now have to wait a few months for this kind of stuff to come out on server-boards to replace Beast or this could drive down the prices for “old” systems that will do the job. The smartphone chips aren’t optimal for desktops unless you need your desktop to be a phone and can get by with <4gB RAM but they are very close. The server-boards are definitely useful to me and mine.
Are we there yet? Yes. This kind of technology makes the desk-loading PC of decades past almost obsolete. There are plenty of use-cases that don’t need huge local storage, displays, keyboard/mouse and processing power and the smartphone of a few years ago can do the jobs we do. The current wave of new products definitely can do whatever desktop machines did and will make nifty servers too, with a bit of a different configuration, more networking, RAM and storage. 2016 is the year that this hardware makes everything (almost) possible.