The Smartphone world has been abuzz in recent months about the debut of the coveted quad-core processor. Long gone are the days when a dual-core was considered the crème de la crème of the market; increasingly, consumers are using their phones for a plethora of different purposes, whether it is to browse the internet or play games during their lunch break. As customers become more and more used to this lifestyle of convenience, they expect faster and faster performance from their mobile phones of choice – and, fortunately, our increasing ability to miniaturize components allows manufacturers to cater to these needs with stronger and smaller processors. One of the most storied processors of the moment is Qualcomm’s quad-core Snapdragon S4 chipset, which is based on an ISA developed by ARM Architecture. It has gained a lot of fame recently for its adoption by the HTC One X, one of the top Smartphones on the market today. (Many of HTC’s earlier models utilize earlier versions of Snapdragon, including the HTC Evo 3D, the HTC Sensation XE, and the midrange One series model, the HTC One S.) But they’ve gained even greater relevance lately, due to the announcement that they plan to diversify into other forms of electronics. Though they still intend for the S4 to remain a primarily Smartphone-related chipset, they have introduced four new S4 chips designed with tablets and HDTV’s in mind; the most prominent two are named the Prime and the Pro. But we can’t help but wonder if this show of strength can be traced back to an easily-identifiable source – Intel’s recent proclamation that they are interested in bringing their proprietary x86 chips to Windows Phone OS devices. This announcement amounts to a declaration of war for major Smartphone chipset manufacturers like Qualcomm and Nvidia (whose Tegra Smartphone chipset is also based on Arm Architecture, and utilized by HTC One X’s current adversary, the top-end Samsung Galaxy SIII). So is this a tit-for-tat decision? Is Qualcomm diversifying into Intel’s traditional territory because Intel is muscling in on theirs? If so, we can probably expect an increasingly aggressive marketing stance from other ARM Architecture chipsets like Nvidia’s Tegra; if they don’t protect their territory, Intel’s dual-core chip (due for release this year) and high-end quad-core chip (slated for a 2013 release and tentatively codenamed “Merrifield”) risk shrinking the market significantly for their competitors. And the high-end chipset market is not the only risky place for ARM’s various adaptors – it’s cheap and easy to manufacture chips for low-end Smartphones, and Intel have announced an integrated chip with this purpose in mind, due for release next year. While all of this may be bad news for manufacturing giants like Qualcomm and Intel, it remains excellent news for Smartphone manufacturers – the more aggressively these chipset behemoths war amongst themselves, the more competitively priced the individual components are likely to become. This ensures cheaper Smartphone manufacturing; which, in turn, ensures that more and more Smartphones can be made. Soon they may become completely ubiquitous, even for casual mobile users – excellent news for a high-quality manufacturer of mobile phone peripherals like Mobile Madhouse!