Mobile hardware has advanced pretty significantly the last few years. From 533MHZ single-core processors in your typical BlackBerry to quad-core Exynos or NVIDIA Tegra 3's, the performance for such a small device is pretty dang impressive.
For most consumers, a dual-core processor is more than enough and even with a quad-core processor, it's pretty difficult to fully utilize. Intel has some pretty ambitious plans to further mobile processors and take them to the next level.
How next level are we talking? The computer chip giant hopes on having a 48-core mobile processor out in the next five to ten years. Yes, 48-core. If that sounds absolutely mind blowing, well, it is.
While this kind of processing power sounds like a thing of the future, 48-core processors have been around since 2009, but only for high level, scientific applications. A processor of this magnitude has a ways before making its way to the average consumers.
First of all, you have to factor in the cost. Right now, a processor like this would cost you all your limbs. Secondly, while the power consumption is okay, for mobile devices, they'd have to not only shrink the size of the processor, but also make it consume far less power.
Intel has a long way to go at perfecting the technology, but hopefully then we'll have significantly better batteries to accommodate such performance. The big question though is why would people need a 48-core processor in their phone or tablet? Maybe five to ten years from now people will look back at this article and call me an idiot.