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Apple’s custom A4 chip introduced with the iPad a year ago was certainly impressive -- but let’s face it, that’s so 2010. The stars are aligning and they seem to indicate that this year’s iDevices will be taking a major step forward with a dual-core A5 processor.
Engadget is reporting that their sources say it’s very likely that Apple will move to a dual-core SGX543 graphics chip with this year’s iPad 2 and iPhone 5, a step up from the current A4 processor’s single SGX535 GPU. According to AppleInsider, the A5 will be this year’s successor to the A4 custom silicon first introduced a year ago with the original iPad.
“What’s particularly great about this move is that the graphical power improvement is rated at around 4X the current generation -- which makes a true 4X resolution iPad ‘Retina Display’ upgrade seem much more of a possibility,” Engadget notes. “We’re also starting to see 1080p HDMI video output as a ‘default’ spec in this year's generation of devices, so there's no reason Apple will want to be left out -- particularly in the Apple TV -- and these dual graphics cores could handle that easily.”
Based on information from their sources, Engadget claims that the next A5 will come from the same companies involved in producing the A4.
“The same cast of A4 characters are to credit for this new A5 generation, including the Apple-owned Intrinsity and PA Semi, while Samsung will again do the production duties,” Engadget reveals.
Looks like this year it’s going to be even more about how much power mobile device manufacturers can pack into their handheld gear -- and we’re all for it!
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter