What is a CPU (Central Processing Unit)?
The central processing unit (CPU) is the unit which does most of the processing inside a computer of smartphone. A central processor, or CPU, is the most vital or important part or component of any computing device. It controls instructions and data flow to and from other parts of the computer.
The CPU has two components:
- Control Unit: extracts instructions from memory and decodes and executes them
- Arithmetic Logic Unit (ALU): handles arithmetic and logical operations
Contemporary processors are made up of multiple cores which allow it to perform multiple instructions at once. And there are several CPUs on a single chip. Almost all CPUs sold today are at least dual core, but at the higher end, you’ll get quad core CPUs, hexa, octa and deca core CPUs in some cases. Some CPUs also use a technology like multi-threading, which creates virtual or temporal processor cores. The performance of the CPU that’s at the core of the chipset is vital for the daily user experience and the general computing performance of the smartphone.
The clock rate is one of the main characteristics of the CPU when performance is concerned. It tells how many instructions or command a CPU can process per second, but that’s not the whole picture when it comes to performance. Clock speed mostly comes into play when comparing CPUs from the same product family or generation. Clock rate is the fundamental rate in cycles per second (measured in hertz, kilohertz, megahertz or gigahertz) for the frequency of the clock in any synchronous circuit.
See also: Operating System