ARM has been busy at work planning their expansion in low-power and mobile computing, announcing today that they are developing a new Cortex-A9 based dual-core CPU implementation. The part is based on TSMC's 40nm-G process, and will be the first ARM architecture capable of exceeding a 2GHz clock frequency coupled with a dual-core format.
The much faster clocks (relative to other ARM processors) were also brought along with a process reduction and other power-saving improvements, resulting in a CPU that will require a mere quarter of a watt to function -- a minuscule amount of power for just about any application. The decreased power consumption alone is a critical interest of ARM's target audience.
For the entire industry, from Apple to Nintendo, ARM architecture remains key for an endless number of devices around the world, from smartphones to consoles and beyond. The Nintendo DS and the iPhone, for instance, both rely on ARM-based CPUs. The new dual-core design will offer a huge performance boost, ARM claiming performance specs at 4000DMIPS, impressive enough for the industry-standard ARM architecture.
If anyone is going to capitalize on ARM technology advancements, it will be Apple. Is it possible that we may see dual-core iPhones in the future? As the current iPhone is based on Cortex-A8 technology, future iPhones seem to be likely candidates for Cortex-A9.