From since mobile devices began totting near-desktop speeds (1ghz+ single core and dual core processors) I’ve wondered how long it would take manufactures to introduce a quad-core processor in a compact mobile device – let’s say a tablet or smartphone? Although we have seen an increase in mobile CPU speeds they’re still not quite a desktop or notebook substitute. Well, i think we’re going to see that change all together in the near future.
Recently, Microsoft unveiled their first consumer quad-core tablet at Tech-Ed 2011 NZ conference in New Zealand. Though the Windows slate name is still unknown, the device sports NVIDIA’s latest Tegra 3 chip (code-named Kal-El) which has four (4) cores and a twelve -core (12) GPU.
That’s right – a 4 core CPU and 12 core GPU which makes this chip 5 times faster than the previous Tegra processors powering several mobile devices such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, Acer Iconia, Motorola Xoom, T-Mobile G-Slate, Toshiba Thrive, and so many more. These devices offer great hardware performance and enhanced functionality so can you imagine a chip 5 times faster? Take a look at the video below to see some of the advances the Tegra 3 chip brings to the table.
As with every new technology there will always be obstacles that must be overcome such as efficient power management and developing software that takes advantage of the new cpu horsepower. However, once the hardware and software systems have been vetted maybe then we can retire the laptop we tug around everyday. Then again maybe someone will create a tablet/smartphone hybrid will that will become the ultimate mobile computing device.
All-in-all, I’m certain there will be many many more manufactures racing to introduce the first quad-core mobile device to the consumer markets. Once the price is right, the OS responsive, the battery lasts the entire day, and there are sufficient ports to connect external devices I personally think it’ll be a game changer.