While some would have you believe that the iPad is nothing more than an oversized iPhone (minus the phone part, as well as a few other things), one important difference between the two lies in the mobile processor making them tick.
While the iPhone uses a Cortex A8, the iPad is the first device to utilize Apple’s new A4 SoC, which is manufactured by Samsung on a currently unknown process node. The A4 has a higher operating frequency (clocked at 1GHz) and is probably manufactured at 45nm.
Wanting to see how much better the iPad’s A4 SoC is compared to the iPhone’s old Cortex A8, Anand Lal Shimpi benchmarked the two against each other and added a third device to the mix: Google’s Nexus One, which uses a 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor.
His test results show that the iPad’s A4 SoC generally makes it perform better than both the iPhone and Nexus One. But Anand is also the first to admit that while the iPad performs better than the other two devices, the difference in performance isn’t that huge. He goes on to say that this bodes well for the upcoming 4th generation iPhone, which is expected to also use the A4 SoC in order to boost performance.
I’d like to say I’m impressed by the iPad’s better performance by use of the new A4 SoC, but when I remember the fact that Apple, for some reason, still hasn’t enabled multitasking on any of its mobile devices running the iPhone OS, I feel nothing but disappointment. What’s the fun in having such a powerful device when you can’t even utilize it in ways possible for many less powerful devices?
Thankfully, jailbreaking the iPad will be possible. Perhaps this will help the situation somewhat, but still, Apple should really consider offering the features this enables right out of the box. Then, maybe, you can color me impressed.
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