Say what you will (and boy, have we!) about the iPad, but you can't deny its actual performance is pretty peppy. Many in attendance at the live debut were wowed by the device's near-instant app launches and portrait-to-landscape-mode changes. Chalk that up to its A4 CPU, an ARM-style chip designed in-house by Apple to provide 1 GHz processor speed, 720p high-def video output, and low battery consumption.
Now people are wondering if the A4, or a variant thereof, might wind up in the next-generation iPhone. It actually makes sense: the iPad is currently running a bumped-up version of the iPhone OS, so dropping an A4-style processor into an iPhone would not only provide a speed/performance boost, but with the smaller screen real estate, you're talking even longer battery life. (Or maybe the same battery life, but true multitasking, mmm?)
A second train of thought posits the A4 as an auxilliary processor for MacBooks, to provide near-instant startup (similar to what Dell is already doing by pairing Intel and ARM chips in some of their laptops).
In any event, Samsung (who provides the ARM-based chips in the iPhone 3G) might start looking nervously over their collective shoulders.
[Via PC World]