Press releases


UL opens new Futuremark Performance Lab in Fremont, California

September 20, 2017


UL Benchmarks

People sometimes wonder how we built our global benchmarking business from Finland. It hasn't been easy. After all, Finland is kind of...remote. 

That's why we are excited to announce the opening of a new Futuremark testing facility in Fremont, California that is ideally placed to serve our partners and customers in Silicon Valley.

The Futuremark Performance Lab is a key part of UL's expansion into benchmarking services. In addition to benchmark testing, the lab will also enable us to offer new services to electronics retailers and hardware manufacturers in North America. 

Futuremark Performance Lab

In our purpose-built lab, we can test the performance of servers, laptops, desktop PCs, mobile devices, and enterprise hardware. 

The lab is housed in a 21.55 m2 (232 sq ft) temperature-controlled room that is fully ESD compliant. The lab is equipped with a variety of digital testing hardware including oscilloscope, multimeter, precision scales, sound level meter, infrared thermometer, and luminance meter. 

Our professional photography equipment includes an SLR camera with macro lens and macro flash, LED light panels, studio light box, and backdrop. Together with our benchmarking software, the lab has everything we need to provide a complete testing service for our customers.

VR Testing and Training

Our VR lab is the first of its kind within UL. It provides a dedicated space in which to demonstrate and test VR equipment. It also serves as a safe environment in which to develop, test and experience VR-based training.

The lab is designed to provide the ideal environment for experiencing VR. It has ample floor space to move around unobstructed while up above, the ceiling-mounted cable management system and sensors keep wires out of the way. The lab is configured with powerful VR-ready PCs supporting Oculus Rift and HTC Vive headsets. Standalone and mobile VR platforms are also available. 

Technical Marketing Services

Our Technical Marketing Services team evaluates our partners' products to find insights that drive compelling marketing stories. Our new lab provides the ideal facility for testing servers, PCs, notebooks, tablets, smartphones, VR systems, and enterprise software. 

With a focus on real-world performance and user experience metrics, we find the facts and present them in professionally crafted reports, white papers, infographics and presentation slides. Find out more

Retail Solutions

The Futuremark Performance Lab in Fremont will also support our new Retail Solutions business. Here we use our expertise in PC and mobile performance to help retailers increase sales, reduce returns and improve customer satisfaction. 

We offer a set of services to help retailers find better ways to sell consumer electronics to their customers. We can test and assess products, create and define product categories, and provide marketing support. In Europe, we have recently helped one of the biggest electronics retailers in the Nordic region improve the way it sells PCs. Find out more.  

Open for business

The Futuremark Performance Lab is located within the UL building at 47173 Benicia Street, Fremont, CA, 94538. To find out more, please call Ryan McCall on +1 510-319-4400 or email benchmark.sales@ul.com.



How does Android 8.0 affect everyday performance?

September 7, 2017


PCMark for Android benchmark for smart phones and tablets

Google has started rolling out Android 8.0 to its Pixel and Nexus devices with other manufacturers expected to follow later this year.

According to Google, Android 8.0 is, "Smarter, faster, more powerful and sweeter than ever," but will you notice the difference when using your favorite apps?

Android OS updates can make wide-reaching changes that affect the whole device. People assume that an OS update will mean better performance too, but we have seen that this is not always the case.

By using a benchmark based on real-world tasks, you can see the areas where an OS update has the biggest impact. PCMark for Android benchmarking app can help you see how device performance changes with Android 8.0.

How to rank and compare the best Android 8.0 devices 

It is easy to find the best smartphones and tablets with PCMark for Android. The in-app Best Devices list ranks over 1000 of the latest devices by average benchmark score.

By default, the list shows scores from devices with the same Android OS version as your own device. To see the list of best Android 8.0 devices follow these simple steps:

PCMark for Android Best Device List for Android 8.0

  1. Swipe left to the Best Devices screen.
  2. Tap the FILTERS button.
  3. Choose a benchmark test.
  4. Choose Android 8.x.

Compare device performance across Android OS versions

PCMark for Android makes it easy to see how Android OS updates affect your phone's performance.

  1. Swipe left to the Best Devices screen.
  2. Tap the FILTERS button.
  3. Use the Search box to find your device.
  4. Tap on your device to open the Device Details view. Landscape mode works best.
  5. Scroll down, then select a benchmark test and Android version to compare scores.


PCMark for Android comparing smartphone performane across Android OS versions

Comparing Google Pixel performance with Android 7.0 and Android 8.0 in PCMark for Android.

PCMark for Android benchmark tests are based on everyday activities such as web browsing, video and photo editing, writing and data manipulation. Use the test scores to see how your device's performance in these areas changes across Android versions. Higher scores, shaded green, indicate improved performance. 

Download

PCMark for Android is a free benchmark app available from Google Play.

Download PCMark for Android benchmark from Google Play



New Vulkan API performance test for Android devices

August 17, 2017


3DMark API Overhead feature test

Today we added a new Vulkan test to our 3DMark Android benchmarking app. The new API Overhead feature test lets you compare the performance of Vulkan and OpenGL ES 3.0 APIs on your Android smartphone and tablet.

3DMark API Overhead feature test

Vulkan is a new graphics API that provides high-efficiency, low-level access to modern GPUs in a wide variety of devices from PCs to smartphones. APIs like Vulkan make better use of multi-core CPUs to streamline code execution and eliminate software bottlenecks, particularly for draw calls.

Games typically make thousands of draw calls per frame, but each one creates performance-limiting overhead for the CPU. APIs with less overhead can handle more draw calls and produce richer visuals. The API Overhead feature test is an impartial test for comparing the performance of Vulkan and OpenGL ES 3.0.

The 3DMark API Overhead feature test measures API performance by making a steadily increasing number of draw calls. The result of the test is the number of draw calls per second achieved by each API before the frame rate drops below 30 FPS.

The purpose of the test is to compare the relative performance of different APIs on a single mobile device. The API Overhead feature test is not a general-purpose GPU benchmark, and it should not be used to compare different Android devices or to compare Android devices with Apple devices.

We recommend reading the 3DMark Technical Guide, which goes into more detail and explains the important differences between feature tests and benchmarks.

Important notes on compatibility

The OpenGL ES 3.0 part of the test requires Android 5.0 or later and a device that supports OpenGL ES 3.0.

The Vulkan part of the test requires Android 7.0 or later and a device that supports Vulkan.

Please note that devices that shipped with early Vulkan drivers may have performance and stability issues in this test. Vulkan performance can be much lower than expected, and the test can crash on devices with underdeveloped Vulkan drivers. Performance on these older devices may improve with future Android OS updates.

Download

3DMark is a free Android benchmark app available from Google Play.

Download PCMark for Android benchmark from Google Play



Futuremark partners with Elkjøp Nordic to make it easier to buy a perfect PC

August 9, 2017


Today, we're announcing an exciting new partnership between Futuremark and Elkjøp Nordic, one the largest consumer electronics retailers in Northern Europe. 

For the important back-to-school sales period now underway, Elkjøp is using Futuremark benchmark scores to make it easier for people to choose and buy the perfect PC, whether online or in one of its stores.

Elkjøp, part of the Dixons Carphone group, is one of the largest consumer electronics retailers in the Nordic region with 400 stores in six countries. Trading as Elgiganten in Sweden and Denmark, Gigantti in Finland, and Elko in Iceland, Elkjøp sells a wide range of consumer electronics and household appliances through its online stores and retail locations.

Elkjøp knows that choosing a new computer is difficult. Many people struggle to relate PC specifications to real-world performance. This can leave less knowledgeable customers feeling confused and uncertain. Others buy cheaper laptops and notebooks without understanding how the low performance of these systems will affect their everyday use and enjoyment. 

Øystein Schmidt, Communications Manager at Elkjøp Nordic AS, says, 

"Our mission at Elkjøp is to give our customers good value for money and a simple, enjoyable shopping experience. Buying a PC is daunting for many people. With Futuremark's help, we are aiming to make it easier than ever."

We worked with Elkjøp to create and define a set of computer categories with clear and helpful names. These categories - Basic, Home, Produce, and Create - describe the capabilities of a system rather than its specifications. For example, PCs in the Basic category are suitable for social media, email, online shopping, and surfing the web. PCs in the Create category are more powerful and are capable of working fluidly with large media files for photo editing, graphic design, video production, and making music.

Every PC, notebook, and laptop sold by Elkjøp has been thoroughly tested in our dedicated lab. We use a range of benchmarks to produce complete data on all aspects of performance from everyday web browsing and personal productivity, to how well a system handles the latest games and virtual reality experiences.

Testing PCs in the Futuremark lab

The PCMark 10 benchmark score determines which category each PC belongs to. For gaming PCs, the 3DMark score indicates graphics performance and VRMark shows the systems that are VR-ready. Comparing PCs is as easy as comparing numbers. The higher the benchmark score, the better the performance.

Screenshot of Elkjøp website

Elkjøp is using categories and benchmark scores to make it easier for its customers to choose and buy the perfect PC. You can find them on its website, on its point-of-sale material in store, and in its advertising and promotions across the Nordic region.

Find out more

For more information on our retail solutions and our partnership with Elkjøp, please visit our new UL website at benchmarks.UL.com.



PCMark 10 is now available for everyone

June 22, 2017


PCMark 10 - The industry standard PC benchmark

We're excited to announce that PCMark 10 is now available to everyone from our website and from Steam.

Following the launch of PCMark 10 Professional Edition at the start of the month, today we are releasing PCMark 10 Basic Edition, a free benchmark for home users, and PCMark 10 Advanced Edition, which adds more tests and features for enthusiasts.

PCMark 10 is the latest version in our series of industry standard PC benchmarks. Updated for Windows 10 with new and improved tests, PCMark 10 is also faster and easier to use.

  • The industry standard PC performance benchmark for Windows.
  • Relevant, real-world tests covering a wide range of everyday activities.
  • Accurate and impartial, ideal for comparing systems and choosing upgrades.
  • Created in cooperation with leading hardware and software companies.


PCMark benchmarks measure the performance of your PC using tests based on real-world applications and activities. In PCMark 10, these tests include everyday tasks like browsing websites, video chat, writing and spreadsheets, photo and video editing, and playing games. 

Run the main benchmark and you'll get a PCMark 10 score that you can use to compare your PC with other systems or to see the impact of Windows updates and hardware upgrades. 

PCMark 10 updates many of the tests in PCMark 8 and adds new ones too. With its new and improved workloads, the main PCMark 10 benchmark takes less than half the time of the equivalent test in PCMark 8.

Each benchmark run produces a high-level benchmark score, mid-level test group scores, and low-level workload scores to give you a detailed view of your PC's performance. Thanks to a brand new feature, you can also compare results side by side in the app.

PCMark 10 shares the same style of user interface as 3DMark and VRMark. With its familiar layout, it's easy to start benchmarking with PCMark 10.

The main PCMark 10 benchmark test measures your PC's performance for a wide range of activities from everyday essentials and productivity applications to demanding work with digital media content.

PCMark 10 Express is a shorter benchmark that focuses on basic home PC use. It includes the Essentials and Productivity test groups. It is less demanding than the main PCMark 10 benchmark.

PCMark 10 Extended expands the main PCMark 10 benchmark with demanding gaming tests that measure GPU and CPU performance. The PCMark 10 Extended benchmark gives you a complete view of your PC's performance for the widest range of activities.

PCMark 10 Advanced Edition - $23.99 until July 5, then $29.99

  • Easy to use, no technical know-how needed.
  • Works with all types of PC, from desktops to tablets.
  • Includes the PCMark 10, Express and Extended benchmarks. 
  • Explore your PC's performance with custom runs.
  • In-depth hardware monitoring graphs.
  • Compare results side by side in the app.
  • Automatically save your results offline.

PCMark 10 Basic Edition - FREE

  • Unlimited runs with the main PCMark 10 test.
  • Other benchmarks, features, and settings are locked.

Special launch offers until July 5

Save 20% on PCMark 10 Advanced Edition in our summer sale.

PCMark 10                                         $23.99, usually $29.99

Save even more when you buy a benchmark bundle.

PCMark 10 + 3DMark                      $21.37, usually $44.99 

PCMark 10 + 3DMark + VRMark    $25.11, usually $59.99


Buy from Futuremark: https://www.futuremark.com/benchmarks/pcmark10
Buy from Steam: http://store.steampowered.com/app/524390/PCMark_10/



Our new home on UL.com

June 19, 2017


UL Benchmarks logo banner

You may remember reading that Futuremark became part of UL in November 2014. 

UL is a global safety science company with more than a century of expertise and innovation in the fields of product safety testing, inspection, and verification services. UL also plays a key role in the development and harmonization of national and international standards. 

With more than 10,000 professionals in 40 countries, UL is dedicated to creating safe living and working environments for all. It's a noble goal, and we are proud to be part of a company that values integrity and independence as highly as we do.  

Since being acquired, we've been getting to know our colleagues at UL, exploring new opportunities, and investing in our people and products.

Later this year, we'll take the next step in our integration with UL. Over the coming months, we will be moving our websites and online services to a new home at benchmarks.UL.com.

Our UL and Futuremark websites will exist side-by-side during this transition, and you can continue to find us here at futuremark.com for now. 

We'll keep you updated with our plans throughout the changeover, but if you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch.



PCMark 10 Professional Edition now available

June 6, 2017


PCMark 10 - The industry standard PC benchmark

We're excited to announce that PCMark 10 Professional Edition is now available for press, business, and government users.

For home users, PCMark 10 Advanced Edition and PCMark 10 Basic Edition will be released on June 22.

What's new in PCMark 10

PCMark 10 is the latest version in our series of industry standard PC benchmarks. Updated for Windows 10 with new and improved workloads, PCMark 10 is also faster and easier to use.

PCMark benchmarks measure overall system performance using tests based on real-world applications and activities. In PCMark 10, the workloads reflect the variety of tasks performed in the modern workplace. This focus makes PCMark 10 Professional Edition an ideal benchmark for organizations that purchase PCs in high-volumes.

Easy to use

PCMark 10 is easy to install and run, with no complicated configuration required. Run the main benchmark and you'll get a PCMark 10 score that you can use to compare systems. PCMark 10 measures overall system performance for modern office work using tests based on real-world apps and activities. There are Extended, Express, and Custom run options for exploring other aspects of performance if needed.

New workloads

PCMark 10 benchmark workloads reflect the performance requirements of a range of modern office applications and activities. PCMark 10 updates and improves many of the workloads in PCMark 8 and adds new ones too. 

Fast and efficient

With its new and improved workloads, the main PCMark 10 benchmark takes less than half the time of the equivalent test in PCMark 8.

Just click run 

In PCMark 10, you no longer have to choose between the Accelerated and Conventional benchmarking modes used in PCMark 8.

Multi-level reporting

Each benchmark run produces a high-level benchmark score, mid-level test group scores, and low-level workload scores. What's more, you can now compare two results side by side in the app.

New yet familiar

PCMark 10 shares the same style of user interface as 3DMark and VRMark. With its familiar layout, it's easy to start benchmarking with PCMark 10.

PCMark 10 Professional Edition

PCMark 10 Professional Edition is the industry standard benchmark that's easy to use.

  • Licensed for business and commercial use.
  • Easy to install and run, no complicated configuration required.
  • Command line automation and scripting.
  • Keep sensitive results private with the offline results option.
  • Export results as XML and PDF for analysis and reporting.
  • Priority technical support over email and telephone.


Futuremark Joins VR First to Help Create VR Industry Standards

April 13, 2017


We are proud to announce that we have joined VR First, a global initiative that drives innovation in virtual and augmented reality by providing state-of-the-art facilities to creators and educators.

The VR First initiative, unveiled in January 2016, engages with top universities and science parks to set up or renovate PC labs into AR/VR-ready facilities. There are currently 26 VR First labs operating worldwide with another 14 coming soon and more in development. To date, over 50 projects serving various verticals have been developed with the equipment and support provided by VR First partners. 

VR First is also working with the IEEE and industry stakeholders to create new standards for VR and related devices. The IEEE Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality Working Group is currently developing eight new standards for VR and AR. These standards are expected to guide investment in VR facilities by governments, science parks, institutions, and immersive arcade companies.

Futuremark is contributing its expertise in performance benchmarking to help VR First members and other VR industry stakeholders define standards, shape the technology roadmap, facilitate the development of cross-platform content, and promote healthy growth of the industry. 

Jani Joki, Director of Engineering, said,

"In a short time, VR First has made impressive progress in bringing together industry partners, creators, and educators to deliver real results. The lack of consistent standards for VR has been widely discussed over the last 12 months. I look forward to working with VR First members to address this important issue."

Ferhan Özkan, Co-Founder, VR First said,

“I am delighted to welcome Futuremark to the VR First initiative. Futuremark's extensive benchmarking experience and independent voice will be invaluable in our mission to democratize VR innovation, set industry standards, and create a global VR knowledge base.”

Futuremark has been making industry standard benchmarks since 1997. Based in Finland, the company makes widely used performance tests for PCs, laptops, notebooks, tablets, and smartphones. Futuremark benchmarks are used throughout industry, by hundreds of press publications, and millions of consumers. 

Futuremark released VRMark, a VR benchmark, last year. VRMark helps manufacturers, press, and consumers test the performance of virtual reality systems. Find out more about VRMark on the Futuremark website: https://www.futuremark.com/benchmarks/vrmark 

Find out more about VR First at https://www.vrfirst.com

Companies and organisations interested in VRMark and other Futuremark benchmarks should reach us at the following email sales@futuremark.com

About VR First

VR First is a global program designed to provide state-of-the-art facilities to creators and educators interested in exploring the power and potential of virtual reality development. VR First Labs and Centers are designed to be the key locations for nurturing new talent in VR/AR development. VR First also helps developers to convert ideas into business opportunities and brings developers together with established industry partners. For more information, visit https://www.vrfirst.com.



3DMark Vantage and PCMark Vantage support ends April 11

March 28, 2017


You might have read that Microsoft will stop supporting Windows Vista on April 11. We will stop supporting our two Windows Vista benchmarks, 3DMark Vantage and PCMark Vantage, on the same day.

Our Vantage benchmarks were designed for Windows Vista, an operating system that is over 10 years old and which is now used by only 1.12% of Windows users according to StatCounter.

From April 11, 3DMark Vantage and PCMark Vantage will:

  • No longer be sold on our website.
  • No longer receive updates, (other than SystemInfo).
  • No longer be guaranteed to work with our online services.
  • No longer be eligible for customer support.

Alternatives to 3DMark Vantage

3DMark Vantage is a benchmark for DirectX 10, an API which is now two generations old. For benchmarking modern gaming systems, we recommend using the latest 3DMark benchmarks:

  • 3DMark Time Spy for DirectX 12 systems.
  • 3DMark Fire Strike for high performance DirectX 11 PCs.
  • 3DMark Sky Diver for DirectX 11 laptops and mid-range PCs.

Alternatives to PCMark Vantage

PCMark Vantage is a system benchmark for Windows Vista. If your PC is less than seven years old, you will get more relevant results by using a more recent version of PCMark. We recommend:

  • PCMark 7 for Windows 7
  • PCMark 8 for Windows 8
  • PCMark 10, coming soon, for Windows 10.

Legacy benchmarks are free to download

All of our legacy benchmarks going back to 3DMark99 are available to download for free from our website. Each benchmark comes with a key to unlock the Advanced Edition features. 3DMark Vantage and PCMark Vantage will be available for free from April 11. https://www.futuremark.com/benchmarks/legacy



Compare Vulkan and DirectX 12 with 3DMark

March 23, 2017


We've added Vulkan support to our 3DMark API Overhead feature test. You can now compare the API performance of Vulkan, DirectX 12, and DirectX 11 with one easy-to-use test. 

Vulkan is a new graphics API that provides high-efficiency, low-level access to modern GPUs in a wide variety of devices from PCs to smartphones. APIs like Vulkan and DirectX 12 make better use of multi-core CPUs to streamline code execution and eliminate software bottlenecks, particularly for draw calls. 

Games typically make thousands of draw calls per frame, but each one creates performance-limiting overhead for the CPU. Vulkan and DirectX 12 reduce that overhead, which means more objects, textures and effects can be drawn to the screen.

The 3DMark API Overhead feature test measures API performance by making a steadily increasing number of draw calls. The result of the test is the number of draw calls per second achieved by each API before the frame rate drops below 30 FPS. 

The purpose of the test is to compare the relative performance of different APIs on a single system. The API Overhead feature test is not a general-purpose GPU benchmark, and it should not be used to compare graphics cards from different vendors. For more details, please read our 3DMark Technical Guide.

The API Overhead feature test is available now in 3DMark Advanced Edition and Professional Edition. Standalone versions will prompt you to download and install the update. On Steam, 3DMark updates automatically. The API Overhead feature test is not available in 3DMark Basic Edition or the Steam demo. Note also that the Vulkan test replaces the Mantle test found in previous versions.

Vulkan vs DirectX in 3DMark API Overhead feature test



Recent News

Older News

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

1998