ARM's cores are at the heart of almost every major smartphone CPU (Apple's being a rather large exception). The move to quad-core chipsets for tablets and smartphones came through ARM's continued push for innovation. ARM is planning more innovation in the coming year, such as Big Little--the idea that some tasks require minimal power but last a long time, whereas others consume much more power and devices will become smart enough to shift cores on that basis.
During the most recent episode of InformationWeek's Valley View--our monthly live Web TV series--ARM's lead mobile strategist, James Bruce, talked about another compelling innovation, involving virtualization. That is, the ability to create virtualized environments on a smartphone, where perhaps the more consumer-oriented applications and data reside in one virtual machine, and enterprise apps and data in another, thereby creating a more secure divide between the worlds of work and play.
ARM, Bruce said, is putting virtualization in hardware. He discusses why this is necessary, and why the impact (to performance and cost) will be negligible. Watch the whiteboard session in the video embedded below.