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iOS 4.3 code hints at A5 processor in next iPhone

Code snippets from today's iOS 4.3 update unearthed by programmers show that the same processor found in the iPad 2 are likely to end up in the next iPhone.

A snippet of code from iOS 4.3 hints at a new device in the iPhone family with the A5 processor.
A snippet of code from iOS 4.3 hints at a new device in the iPhone family with the A5 processor. (Click to enlarge.)
Filippo Bigarella (@FilippoBiga)

Apple released the latest update to its iOS operating system just this morning, and already savvy coders have found signs that the company may be testing dual-core processors in the next version of the iPhone.

The iPad 2 is the first iOS device to ship with the A5, Apple's new dual-core processor that succeeds the A4. The A4 had been released first on the iPad before making its way to the iPhone 4, then later to the iPod Touch and Apple TV.

Riffing off the discovery of the A5 processor's code name within iOS 4.3's code by Chronic Dev group member Chronic, iOS developer Filippo Bigarella found mention of "N94AP," a code name that would signify a yet-to-be-released iPhone based on past device code names. The N94AP mention was then linked up with "S5L8940," the name for the A5 within the iOS code.

Is this a definitive sign the next iPhone will sport a dual-core processor? Certainly not, but it would jibe both with last year's processor refresh pattern of the iPad's chip trickling down to other iOS devices, and advanced notice of other Apple products from within development code. That was most recently the case with the Verizon iPhone, which was referenced in iOS 4 code back in August, some five months before it was officially announced.

(Via 9to5Mac)