Today Apple announced the iPad 2, which unless you are living in a cave, you likely have heard about more then you wish already. The iPad 2 debuts the next evolution in Apples own ARM processor. The A4 (which was a single core 1GHz class ARM Cortex-A8 made by Samsung) is out, and a dual core replacement is in. Details are thin until a proper tear down is done, but it is most likely a 1GHz dual core ARM Cortex-A9 with a dual core PowerVR 543 replacing the single core PowerVR 535. It is most likely fab’d again by Samsung. Apple’s press shot during their presentation is NOT an A5, the PR folks at Apple simply Photoshopped the original press shot of the A4 from last year. Note the date codes on the chip are 0939 and 0940 (sine their is 2 dies in it), which is late 2009.
Apple also made the somewhat deceptive remark that the iPad 2 is the first dual core tablet to ship ‘in volume.’ HP’s Touchpad runs a dual core Snapdragon and is shipping ‘soon.’ LG is shipping their tablet this month with a very capable Tegra 2, and Samsung will follow with the Galaxy Tab 10.1, also Tegra 2 powered. RIM’s Playbook which is in beta, used a TI OMAP 4430 dual core Cortex-A9. This puts Apple right in the mix of the dual core frenzy that will playout this year.
We’ll update the photo as soon as someone (likely the folks at iFixIt) get and tear one down.