Octa-core vs quad-core vs dual-core: which is best?
In smartphones we’ve seen a similar progression, with quite a few phones boasting octa-core chips. Eight cores is almost unheard of on desktop PCs, so why have phones gained extra cores so quickly?
The answer, in short, is a demand for better battery life.
Many phones use ARM processors, and while it is – relatively speaking – fairly easy to put a powerful quad-core processor in the latest phone, battery technology isn’t really up to the job of keeping that processor (along with the screen, modem, GPS and other components) fed with power all day long.
The ‘low power’ cores are used for most of the time, including for tasks such as reading and sending email, navigating around the operating system, and also browsing the web. But when more power is needed, such as for intensive games or editing photos or video, the chip dynamically switches to the faster quartet of cores.
So far, the only octa-core processors we’ve seen have been in Android ...