First Multi-Core Mobile Platform Demonstrated
ST-Ericsson and ARM announced today that they will be demonstrating the world's first Symmetric Multi Processing (SMP)-enabled mobile platform at a private event at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
The technological breakthrough is the first of its kind and is based on the ARM(R) Cortex(TM)-A9 multicore processor, which represents a significant leap from previous generations of baseband/application processor architectures by providing unprecedented levels of performance and power efficiency.
An ST-Ericsson representative explains that having multiple processor cores will improve real-time performance on mobile devices for a better user experience. The demonstration model will, of course, be running the Symbian OS.
The same Cortex-A9 multicore processor has been postulated as the CPU behind the rumors of Apple's next generation iPhone. ZDNet reported that the next generation iPhone could support up to quad-core processors. There has been some debate about how quickly ARM would be able to ramp up these processors as the original timeline for the Cortex-A9 had targeted late 2009/early 2010.
Apple appears to have invested heavily in bringing ARM design and development in-house with their acquisition of P.A. Semi and speculation that they are an architectural licensee of ARM's processors.