iPad 3 chip leak squeaks dual-core tweaks
A5X logic board spied
Apple's next tablet offering will feature a dual-core A5X system-on-a-chip, if snaps of a supposed iPad 3 logic board that surfaced on-line are anything to go by.
The Cupertino giant is predicted to announce an upgraded processor for its forthcoming fondleslab, with an A6 chip the logical step.
This was cast into doubt earlier this month, though, when snaps of Apple's iBoot bootloader programming tool were leaked, which referred to an ARM chip dubbed the 'S5L8945X'.
That revelation has now been backed up further with the above image of the AX5 chip, which comes by way of a forum post on Chinese site WeiPhone.
As the picture shows, the new CPU is an upgraded version of the A5 – 940X to 945X, not 940X to 950X – rather than a new generation of processor. There are also a pair of 16GB flash memory chips on show. No quad-core power then?
A date code of 1146 can be seen, which suggests the A5X chip was manufactured in the 46th week of 2011, or the 14-20 November to be precise.
Why would I need 4 cores if my GPU can do all the grunt work anyway? I've yet to see an iPad (or any rival tablet) app that needs four core CPUs more than it needs multi-core GPUs.
Also, I rather value battery life. All the CPU cores in the world are useless if they drink so much power that your tablet is dead by lunchtime.
OTOH, it's possible that the iPad 3 won't have the retina display. There may be some truth to the rumours of an iPad 4 (or "iPad 3 HD") later in the year, when the CPU and GPU technology is more likely to be ready to do such a high-res display justice.
Or, of course, these could be photos of an early prototype.
That's the problem with rumours: they're just... rumours!
Re: Re: Re: Hmm, anyone else see a pattern?
"I wonder how many iPad2 owners actually know the cameras are 1/4 of the resolution of my 5 year old Nokia 6300? Not too many I think...."
I wonder how many iPad2 owners actually use the camera for anything more than Facetime. I wouldn't use it as a camera if it were the best in the world.
Let's face it, the point of it was for Facetime which it does adequately.
The performance metric that counts is the amount of RAM on the device. "Droidtards" have real multitasking, so they can switch between web-browsing (while it's loading) to pull up their playlist, pop over to a remote desktop window, jump back to their picture album, etc etc etc, all without causing disconnects (with the webpage or remote desktop), nor having to page RAM to/from the flash storage. Without this multitasking ability for iOS, they don't need to load up iDevices with more than their 512MB allotment. (iOS has limited multitasking for i-branded apps only, so yes you can play your iTunes music while surfing, I know).
Now, how to power all of these things, plus anything else that might come up in the next year or so you own the device? A quad-core chip should do it. Since the platform is threaded as a standard (unlike the Windows environment of yester-year), all 4 cores could actually get used. Zipping around on a single core with a 800x600 screen (or worse, the phone you cited) won't see much of a performance bottleneck (CPU-wise) with your apparent workload. Mine, however, makes even 1GB RAM dual core chippery fall over (props to the Galaxy Tab 10.1 for handling it best though). We'll see if the iPad2S can top what we can pick up today with the Asus Transformer Prime.