updated 12:20 am EST, Thu March 1, 2012
WP8 may go to Snapdragon S4 chips
Microsoft's plans to go dual-core with Windows Phone could see it at least partly catch up in performance. A leak handed out to The Verge had Microsoft staff already testing early versions of a partner's Windows Phone 8 device leaning on a 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4, or the MSM8960. "At least one" phone would have the combination sometime later in the year.
Sprint was supposedly interested enough in Windows Phone 8 that it was courting Nokia about the prospects of an LTE-based Windows Phone 8 device. The carrier has mostly skipped having newer Windows Phones since the HTC Arrive last year and may be reluctant to go back in without a promise of LTE to keep its devices competitive.
Processor-designer Qualcomm wouldn't confirm these plans, pointing to hardware diesignerso nstead. The jump to dual-core is considered almost mandatory, however, given that Microsoft has always used Snapdragon processors in its Windows Phone chassis spec and is unlikely to change anytime soon.
Windows Phone's continual low market share has been blamed partly on Microsoft waiting as much as a year to integrate a Snapdragon chip in a Windows Phone update. Although the OS itself is speedy, the absence of 1080p video and other benefits of more recent processors has let Apple and Google walk away with the high-end part of the market.