What does dual, quad or octa core processor mean in a smart phone?

The last time you bought a phone, did you spend days going through the specs, comparing it with other phones? You must have come across a long list of things such as megapixels, storage, processor, cores etc. and you just looked for the higher number in each option. Well if you spent so much time looking at those numbers, why not understand them better too?

Let’s take a look at your smartphone’s processor.


What is it?

A processor (CPU), in simple terms, is your Smartphone’s brain. As the name suggests, it’s a chip that processes all the inputs and provides the meaningful outputs. Earlier, CPUs used to have a single core but now even the smallest devices run on multiple cores.


So, what are these cores?

Each core in the CPU is a separate processing unit that processes commands for the CPU. A processor can have one, two, four, six, eight cores and so on. This is the number that is represented by dual, quad, hexa, and octa core respectively. All these CPUs work at a different speed called the clock speed.

How do they differ?

In most cases, it’s simple math. More the cores, more the commands executed, and lesser the time taken in doing so. These cores are like men at work. More men will finish the work quickly and smoothly. But to assume that quad core will work twice as fast as dual core would be wrong because the final speed depends on various factors such as compatibility with the hardware, nature of the program, etc.


Should I go for more cores then?

Though octa cores won’t work 4 times faster than dual core, it would still be much faster than it. More cores allow you to perform multiple tasks at the same time without making your smartphone crawl at snail’s pace. So, if you want to browse the internet while listening to music and attaching files in your mail, then more cores are what you need.

Though you were doing just fine looking for the higher number, now you also know exactly what those numbers can do for you. So, keep an eye out for it the next time you are looking at the specs.

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