Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Multi Core Mobile Chip

It looks like the rumors of a multi-core mobile chip are actually well-founded. Boy, would something like this make for a jaw-dropping future iPhone model that would give us a real need for blocks and GCD.

from Bill Dudney


Jake said...

I did a little googling and found that the dual-core Cortex-A9 has been out since (at least) October of 2007:

The latest release seems to add 1GHz clock speed, bringing the A9 up to 2.0GHz.

Are there specific rumors alluding to the use of this latest A9 MPCore in the iPhone?

Jeff LaMarche said...

I don't trust specific rumors, but I can certainly start one if you'd like.

There was this, back in June:

and this

The chip may have been around, but it hasn't shipped in a phone or other handheld device of similar size yet. ARM has announced that "smart phones" using the multicore A9 will ship in 2010, though they haven't said which company will be. The natural choices are the iPhone and Palm, which are both using the A-series of processors (I've heard some Blackberry models do too, but don't quote me on that).

The Cortex A9 is architecturally similar to the ARM-designed chip in the iPhone (which is based on the A8) and has a similar instruction set, so it's a natural choice for the iPhone.

Given how secretive Apple is, we're unlikely to see any real information until right before the actual product release, which probably isn't until at least January, 2010, but more likely June 2010, since Apple has historically introduced new iPhone models at WWDC.

Roy said... might be interested to know that the original ipod was multi-core! [or at least dual-core, which is technically multi-core, it's just that the multi-part ends at two...]