9to5Mac is reporting that evidence has cropped up in a beta version of iOS 5.2, indicating that Apple is building in support for quad-core processors in future iOS devices. Since this find is in a beta of a soon to be released version of the OS, it’s a safe bet that this is built-in support is for Apple’s much-rumored “A6″ chip.
The report goes on to explain what was found. Specifically, the single core chip, the A4, falls under the designation of “cores/core.0″ in the code, while the dual-core A5 chip goes by a “/core/core.1″ designation. This new designation is referenced by “/cores/core.3″, and as a natural line of progression, suggests a quad-core chip.
There have been previous rumors suggesting that Apple’s A6 (presumed name) chip would come with four cores. However, other reports have suggested that production of the chip may not make it in time for Apple’s usual March iPad launch timeframe.
A quad-core chip would make sense in the case of an iPad that carries a denser “Retina” display. You simply need more power to push more pixels. The extra power not used by the denser display could be used as a selling point, and lead to the creation of games and apps with an even higher fidelity than is already offered on a mobile device.
Images courtesy of 9to5Mac.