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Analyst: Intel Atom inside iPhone in 2010

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When a European Intel exec was recently said to have claimed future iPhones will use the chip giant's Atom processor, the company quickly stated the fellow alleged no such thing. But now someone else has made that very claim.

JoAnne Feeney, an analyst with US investment hours FTN Midwest Securities, recently told clients that the iPhone circa 2009/2010 will be Atom-based, Barron's Magazine blogger Eric Savitz notes.

What's suspicious here is the 2009-2010 timeframe, which is exactly when Intel has said the next generation of Atom, the 'Moorestown' chip, is set to appear. That suggests Feeney is basing her claim on the handset's debut solely on the forecast arrival of Moorestown rather than anything else.

She reckons Intel's Atom development programme is moving rapidly and is “well ahead of schedule”. Accordingly, she claims, 2009 will see the debut of a 45nm Moorestown, with a 32nm version following in 2010.

The 32nm Moorestown, cheaper and more power efficient than its predecessor, could find its way into the iPhone, she suggests.

Expect Intel to make more of the 32nm Moorestown at its Intel Developer Forum in August, she says.

Of course, what's not clear is why Feeney thinks Apple would migrate its Arm-based iPhone over to the x86 platform.

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