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References to quad-core ARM CPU appear in Xcode compiler

updated 12:00 pm EDT, Fri September 23, 2011

May be testbed for future A-series chip

The most recent source code for Clang -- the default compiler in Xcode -- now shows support for a quad-core Marvell processor, the ARM-based Armada XP, according to Ars Technica. The chip is notably built for low-powered cloud computing tasks. Support can only be enabled when an "open source" flag is left undefined, something believed to imply that only Apple's own Clang binaries can compile for the XP.

The company is unlikely to use Marvell's chip in any Mac or iOS devices, as since the first-generation iPad it has taken to creating its own ARM-based processors, the A series. It's speculated that Apple may be employing the Armada XP in a prototype logic board, letting software engineers work on optimizations for iOS or OS X while its hardware team crafts an actual quad-core A-series chip, possibly the A6.

Apple has been rumored as testing a MacBook Air running an ARM chip instead of an Intel processor. Such a switch would let Apple take more control over its computer designs, and possibly help bridge iOS and OS X. It might also bring a number of complications however, namely having to rework OS X for compatibility with the ARM platform and third-party devices.

By Electronista Staff
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  1. LenE

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2004



    Maybe the departing X Serve replacement is not the Mac Mini or Mac Pro, but a whole new iServe rack-mount. They have to stuff that NC data center with something.

    -- Len

  1. facebook_Justin

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Sep 2011


    comment title

    Just what we need, Apple turning their computers into tampons. Bad move Apple, I don't want a toy computer, you already make the iPad, thats enough toys. Stick to real processors for your computers please.

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