IPad processor to power iPhone 4?

The forthcoming iPhone 4 looks likely to be running the same custom A4 processor powering the iPad, according to reports.

The information was reported by a Vietnamese tech blog, which claimed to have acquired yet another prototype iPhone 4 from an unnamed businessman while in the US. If the story’s true, this is the second prototype iPhone 4 misplaced by Apple in recent months.

Indeed, the device shares much in common with the smartphone acquired by Gizmodo last month. The square case remains, as does the front-mounted camera, round volume buttons and metal trim.

After tearing the device apart, the blog discovered the processor powering the prototype shared a serial number with the custom 1GHz Apple A4 processor found in the iPad.

The chip was designed by Apple’s semiconductor-design company PA Semi, together with the recently acquired Intrinsity, and is notable for its low power draw.

If the chip is making its way to the iPhone 4, it could help eke a longer battery life out of the notoriously power hungry smartphone.

Apple has not returned our request for comment at the time of writing.

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