With everyone, and their mother, working on an ARM chip architecture for the upper end phone-to-low level PC market, it may be that Microsoft, not wanting to be late to the party this time, has begun a port of the Windows OS to ARM.

The latest in the lineup of manufacturers to come up with something different is Japanese giant NEC, with a quad core version of the basic chip –

[Maximum PC]

According to a report in the EETimes, NEC is gearing up to show off a high performance quad-core processor built around ARM’s Cortex-A9 design. The unveiling is expected to take place during the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next week.

If true, NEC would join a fraternity of companies claiming a quad-core chip based on ARM architecture. During CES, for example, Marvell Technology said it had developed the world’s first quad-core ARM chip, but did not provide any details. Marvell’s design is said to run faster than 1GHz, though it’s unclear if the chip is a custom design or built around ARM’s Cortex-A9.

It’s safe to say that NEC has been chomping at the bit to release a quad-core Cortex-A9 chip. The company first introduced a multi-core ARM processor back in 2005, which was made up of four ARM11 processors and considered a test chip based on the ARMv6 instruction set, EETimes reports

Since Windows Mobile is such a bust, and Microsoft is talking up the light weight of the newest Windows kernel, the proof would be something that looks exactly like Windows 7 and runs on an ARM tablet device.

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