Eight cores, in a mobile processor? Balderdash! But according to EETimes, that's just what Samsung's planning on unveiling in February at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference (that sounds so exciting).

Now before you get too excited, this isn't - technically speaking - an eight-core processor. It's a dual quad-core, which is to say, a two-processor chip. The design is based on a reference architecture thought up by ARM themselves, dubbed "big.little," and is designed to combine the light-load battery life of a high-efficiency quad-core 28nm ARM A7 chip with a super-hi-po A15 processor for heavy lifting. The exact specifications, for our nerdier readers, are: 1 quad-core ARM A7 chip clocked at 1.2GHz for everyday tasks, and 1 quad-core ARM A15 chip clocked at 1.8GHz w/ 2MB L2 cache for processor-intensive tasks like video games.

ARM itself has said the "big.little" project is delivering benefits beyond those expected when the architecture was initially announced, and Samsung's chip should be the first on the market based on the concept. So yes, this will be a new Exynos of some sort.

Should you expect this chip in the Galaxy S IV (or whatever Samsung's going to call it - because that's far from a given)? It's possible, but not necessarily likely. The gap between chip announcement and tape-out (mass-production readiness) can be lengthy. With the first batch of Exynos 5 Dual devices just now hitting the market in the form of the new Samsung Chromebook and Nexus 10, this eight-core beast may not be ready in time for the next "next big thing." Samsung could very well specifically be targeting this chip for Chromebooks and Windows RT / Android tablets before taking a dive into smaller form factors, too.

Either way, it's exciting business - I can't say I ever tire of technology getting faster.