The folks of 9to5Mac have found an interesting bit of code in iOS 5.1 beta, that shows a potential feature of the next iPad and iPhone when it comes to CPU choice: quad core processing. With Android already getting its first quad core tablet, the Transformer Prime and a couple more models being ready for showcasing soon at CES, Apple is bound to make a move in this area.

Also, HTC and Samsung are sure to unveil quad core phones in the following weeks, so the new iPhone also has to do something about that. The iOS 5.1 beta software includes references to a quad core iPhone and quad core iPad chips, that could come on the future versions of the handset and tablet made by the Cupertino giant. People familiar with iOS have dissected version 5.1 and found the typical use for code referring to cores saying “core.3”.

Usually “/cores/cores.0” describes a single core device, “core1” a dual core device, “core.2” a triple core unit that doesn’t exist and finally “core.3” is all about the quad core. Of course, you should take the info with a grain of salt and assume it’s a mere speculation, at least till Apple unveils the goods. It would make sense to use a more powerful CPU on the iPad, since the display and connectivity will also get upgrades, to LTE and Retina technology. As far as the iPhone goes, I’m happy with the current iPhone 4S CPU, but an extra bit of power is never bad.