Quad-Core: The New Battlefront Among Smartphone Makers

Mobile World Congress just started and even before it began, a lot of handset manufacturers have already revealed their flagship smartphones. A number of them have made the first move with LG wanting to take the limelight as the first one to have a quad-core Android smartphone.

HTC is poised to officially announce their entries while Samsung has kept mum all these days except for revealing its own quad-core Exynos chip for mobile phones.

Just about two years ago, the race to the top of the smartphone market were waged in the gigahertz (GHz) especially when Android came into the scene.

The race somewhat plateaued at 1GHz and peaked at 1.5GHz. Then last year, everyone started doing multiple cores instead of just pumping the clock cycles higher.

LG Mobile got a Guinness Book of World Record title for the first one to bring a dual-core smartphone (that was just less than 10 months ago).

LG Optimus 4X HD specs:

  • 4.7″ IPS LCD display @ 1280×800 pixels
  • Tegra 3 processor 1.3GHz quad-core
  • NVidia GeForce GPU
  • 1GB RAM
  • 16GB internal storage
  • up to 32GB via microSD
  • WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
  • Bluetooth 3.0
  • GPS w/ aGPS support
  • 8MP autofocus rear camera
  • 1080p video recording
  • 1.3MP front-facing camera
  • 2150mAh Li-Ion battery
  • Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich

NVidia is once again one of the first players to introduce it with their Tegra 3 chip (now marketed as 4PLUS1). We’ve seen the Tegra 3 chip running on the Asus Transformer Prime so we pretty much know how it will fare on a smaller device like a smartphone.

Quad-core chips offer better performance and longer battery life and while that might be an inherent advantage, a lot of manufacturers will eventually jump in and follow the bandwagon because it is just a good marketing tool for a flagship device.

This trend reminds us of the PC industry many years ago. The gigahertz war between Intel and AMD was shifted to dual-core chips right up to 12-cores at the moment.

The hardware on flagship smartphones are becoming more and more powerful that it’s closing in on the PC. It will be interesting what new handset will be revealed this week at the Mobile World Congress.