When unveiling the iPhone 5, Apple proclaimed the iPhone 5′s A6 processor has 2x the processing and 2x the graphical power of its predecessor, iPhone 4S. This lead most tech blogs, including dotTech (guilty as charged), to mark the iPhone 5 as having a quad-core processor. Turns out the iPhone 5 that isn’t true.
Teardowns and analysis of the A6 SoC (i.e. the CPU and GPU) reveal it has a custom designed dual-core 1GHz processor based on ARMv7 with an accompanying triple-core GPU. It isn’t known exactly what GPU but they look to be PowerVR SGX 543MP3 clocked at 256MHz. The kicker? The A6 SoC appears to be manufactured by none other than Samsung. I say “appear” because it isn’t like the SoC has “Samsung” written on it but, as UBMTechInsights points out, “the A6 reveal markings are similar to the Samsung markings found in the A4 and A5 processors”.
For those that don’t know, despite the legal battle going on between Apple and Samsung, Apple uses Samsung as a major supplier of components used in iDevices — components such as flash memory and SoCs.
Of course Fandroids will probably use the lack of a quad-core processor as ammo against the iPhone 5. However, in my opinion it doesn’t really matter how many cores are inside a device if its performance is smooth. While the iPhone 5 may have some issues, I have yet to read about laggy performance on it. So keep the “ha-ha-no-quad-core” crap to yourself, please. If you insist on ridiculing the iPhone 5 for the lack of a quad-core, I may just have to point out how the iPhone 5′s triple-core PowerVR SGX 543MP3 is very powerful and iOS makes excellent use of GPU acceleration… so the number of CPU cores on the iPhone 5 is almost unimportant. Of course I’m exaggerating a bit with my latter statement, but you get my point.