Intel is relatively new to the smartphone game, with just a couple of Medfield devices available today. However, the company is making waves this week thanks to comments made by its General Manager of Mobile and Communications. According to Mike Bell, Android and multiple cores just don't mix. At least not at the moment.
The Inquirer cites Bell as saying Intel's own testing shows that multi-core implementations can actually run slower than single core solutions. What's more, it's not really clear how much of a benefit there is in turning the second core on because of the way 'the people' have not implemented their thread scheduling.
"If you are in a non-power constrained case, I think multiple cores make a lot of sense because you can run the cores full out, you can actually heavily load them and/or if the operating system has a good thread scheduler," Bell explained to the Inquirer.
"A lot of stuff we are dealing with, thread scheduling and thread affinity, isn't there yet and on top of that, largely when the operating system goes to do a single task, a lot of other stuff stops. So as we move to multiple cores, we're actually putting a lot of investment into software to fix the scheduler and fix the threading so if we do multi-core products it actually takes advantage of it."
Intel's Medfield chip is a single core mobile platform launching at a time when solutions like the quad-core Tegra 3 is well established in the market, not to mention dual-core solutions from the likes of Qualcomm, so Intel would have had plenty of multi-core options to test against Medfield. Unfortunately Bell didn't mention which multi-core chips tested poorly when compared to Intel's single core.