Note: Article title is a tounge-in-cheek reference to a recent ARSTechnica article. See below for the real story. It’s actually all about the browser engine and platform, not the OS.
I’ve been recording SunSpider tests for a long time now (feel free to contribute to that list) and have been very impressed by the way that both hardware and software improvements have brought the figures down. In the ARM-based world, the best-in-class devices are producing SunSpider results in less than 10 seconds (iPad, iPhone 4) with some new devices even reaching down to sub 6 seconds [See title reference.] In the world of Intel, netbooks are producing Sunspider results of about 2 seconds (using the latest Chrome build.)
Click to enlarge.
Above is the result for the Aava phone I’m testing at the moment. 4215ms. It runs on Intel’s Moorestown platform at 1.5Ghz and uses the same CPU as you find in netbooks. Running Sunspider on the latest Firefox build on the netbook and the Firefox Mobile build on the MeeGo-based Aava phone you can see the difference is marginal. 4.2 seconds for a prototype phone is quite impressive. The figures confirm the CPU speed and also confirm that the sunspider score is likely to drop to around 2 seconds with the latest Chrome or Android browser build. Try Sunspider on your phone or PC browser to see what score you get. For reference, I use a ultra mobile PC as my desktop PC. It runs a 1.6Ghz Atom CPU and returns a score of about 4.1s. True desktop PCs will come in at below 0.5s
We really are talking PC-power here but there are two things we must not forget. 1) Multi-core ARM-based devices are round the corner too. A dual-core 1.2Ghz Snapdragon platform is likely to reach right down to the 2-3s range. 2) We must also remember that if you were to run this test continuously on these high-power platforms, you are likely to have a dead phone in just a few hours!