Windows Phones could go dual-core in the not too distant future. Qualcomm has revealed that its dual-core chips have been approved for Windows Phone 8.
Microsoft's Windows Phone software currently runs on a range of phones from assorted manufacturers, most notably Nokia, but they're all single-core. Chip-builder Qualcomm has suggested that will change when it's updated to the next big version of the software, Windows Phone 8.
Speaking at Taiwan trade show Computex, a Qualcomm boss told CNET Asia the company's Snapdragon S4 chip has been certified for Windows Phone 8.
Intriguingly he also said that even if a dual-core processor is put into a new Windows Phone, it didn't mean that "both cores would be used". I wonder what that means, as it doesn't make much sense to put an expensive processor in a phone and then fail to use it to its full capability.
Perhaps this is a reference to the way multi-core phones only fire up backup cores when they're taking on a tough task, leaving the day-to-day chores to one core. High-end phones such as the quad-core HTC One X and Samsung Galaxy S3, for example, only turn to the extra cores when taking on heavy work like playing fast-moving games or videos.
But the existence of quad-core phones just shows how far Windows Phone is behind other types of mobile. The iPhone 4S is dual-core, and so are many Android phones -- making single-core increasingly look like the budget option.
But that's not to say multi-core is universally popular. Simply chucking in extra cores isn't automatically going to make a phone as powerful as it could be: processor and software must work in perfect harmony too. And some think multi-core is a waste of juice -- Nokia reckons quad-core phones just waste your battery, while Sony sneers at quad-core inefficiency.
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