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Quad Core Cortex A15 is ARM's Next Super Chip

We're pretty stoked at the promise of dual-core ARM Cortex A9 mobile devices based on the Nvidia Tegra 2 and eventually the Samsung Orion – both should feature performance that'll make today's fastest smartphones seem a little slow.

ARM today announced the Cortex A15 MPCore processor that promises to deliver a 5x performance improvement over today's advanced smartphone processors, within a comparable energy footprint. The Cortex-A15 processor has the projected headroom to run at up to 2.5GHz and is targeted at manufacture in 32nm, 28nm, with a roadmap extending to 20nm.

The Cortex-A15 extends the capabilities of the ARM Cortex-A Series by adding hardware support for OS virtualization, soft-error recovery, larger memory addressability and system coherency. The A15 also features full application compatibility with all of the other current Cortex-A processors, which means "Android™, Adobe® Flash® Player, Java Platform Standard Edition (Java SE), JavaFX, Linux, Microsoft® Windows® Embedded Compact 7, Symbian® and Ubuntu, along with more than 700 ARM Connected Community members" are supported in the design.

The only bad part of this announcement is that we probably won't be seeing products based on this chip ship until late 2012 or early 2013.

That sort of far-off time frame should give the Cortex A9 time to stretch its legs and gain as much popularity as the Cortex A8 has in smartphones.

Read more on the Cortex-A15 MPCore processor at ARM's site.

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • cronik93
    Seems pretty fast.
    Reply
  • insider3
    willgartcool... I will play crysis 3 on my phone really usefull!!!!
    No you wont.
    Reply
  • madass
    But what about actual benchmarks?
    A comparison with modern desktop cpu's?
    Reply
  • andrewcutter
    im all for arm as long as they do not make socs only. show me some stand alone cpus that i can put on the motherboard pls.
    Dont get me wrong but i hope they dont expand from mobile to desktop/server with their SOC way pls :(
    Reply
  • dalta centauri
    A quad core cpu running at 2.5GHz on the next tablets/phones...
    insider3No you wont.Hey, you never know what you're gonna get. For all we know there could be a mobile crysis game in the future.
    Would be cool to see this on the latest tablets though. 2.5GHzx4, 500gb HDD, 4gb DDR3 1333MHz, 7" screen at 1920x1080 resolution. God, if the price is 400-500$ I would get it, even if there's no real point.
    Reply
  • scook9
    By the time this is out...something tells me all the competition will also have comparable or better parts making this not so exciting.....they just made a press release about it first
    Reply
  • Pyroflea
    I agree, this would be fantastic for tablets. I really don't see anybody out there needing this much firepower in their smartphone, but that's just my opinion.
    Reply
  • insider3
    dalta centauriA quad core cpu running at 2.5GHz on the next tablets/phones...Hey, you never know what you're gonna get. For all we know there could be a mobile crysis game in the future.Would be cool to see this on the latest tablets though. 2.5GHzx4, 500gb HDD, 4gb DDR3 1333MHz, 7" screen at 1920x1080 resolution. God, if the price is 400-500$ I would get it, even if there's no real point.
    Holler back once you find out a way to cram 2.1 Million pixels onto a 7 inch screen. And by the time that happens, I'm sure nobody will be playing crisis except for you.
    Reply
  • Parsian
    Is there any bench mark to compare single core ARM processor to Atom processors? I want to see how much performance gap there is
    Reply
  • Stifle
    If a smaller packaged powerhouse with lower power requirements make using a "netbook" not as painful in the future as it is today, I may pick one up for internet browsing around the house or at work. Today that is not interesting to me.
    Reply