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iPhone 5 and iPad 2 will have multi-core chips

In what we suspect might be just another runaway Apple myth, multiple tech news outlets are confidently reporting that Apple is working on multi-core chips for the next batch of iOS-powered devices.

Originating in Hong Kong via Chinese-language Apple Daily, and spreading quickly to the Western media, we suspect rumours are largely based on the (slightly spurious) evidence-based suggestions that the next iteration of the iPad will feature a much higher resolution screen.

Apple Insider is quoting anonymous insider sources which reckon that a new version of Apple's custom-built A4 chip will be needed to drive the new display and bring the video quality up to full 1080p. As such, the next chip will feature not one but two SGX543 graphics cores to replace the previous SGX535 version.

The newer silicon not only has twice the processing power at the same clock speed but can also use OpenCL to offload intensive number-crunching to the GPU if it's not too busy drawing pretty pictures.

The SGX543 is designed to to be used in multi-core SoCs and up to 16 can be rammed into the same chunk of chippage.

So you can see how these rumours grow in the telling:

We've spotted a vague bit of evidence which might or might not suggest that Apple is putting a nicer screen in the new iPad 2 (which incidentally doesn't actually officially exist).

If they are using that fancy new screen, they'll need a fancy new chip to drive it. In that case they'll have to use chip B to drive screen C. But chip B comes in variant D which will allow technology E (in this case full HD) to work so... chip D it is. Unless they go for the quad-core version, in which case they'll definitley be using chip F.

It's true... honest. Fat bloke down the Karaoke bar in Hong Kong said so.

We're not saying Apple isn't working on fantastic multi-core chips for the next batch of iDevices, we just wish people would stop presenting soft rumours as hard facts.