New Multi-Core iPhone with Firmware 3.0?

ZDNet reports that the iPhone 3.0 firmware will support quad-core processors in an upcoming iPhone hardware revision. While Apple has not yet detailed iPhone 3.0 firmware, MacRumors has independently heard from a reliable source of this same multi-core support in the 3.0 firmware which should accompany the next iPhone.

Meanwhile, Imagination Technologies is announcing a multi-core GPU that could be suitable for iPhone use. Apple, an investor in Imagination Technologies, presently uses a less powerful version of their PowerVR GPU in the iPhone and iPod touch.

The likely candidate for the new iPhone's CPU, however, is a derivative of the ARM Cortex A9 multi-core processor. The ARM Cortex has excellent power efficiency, well ahead of Intel's Atom offerings. Apple appears to be an ARM architectural licensee and their acquisition of P.A. Semi has brought low-power chip design expertise into the company.