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printed October 25, 2014
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Processor

(CPU)

Central Processing Unit

The processor is the "brain" of a device. It's what handles the instructions of software apps.

All phones have a processor of some kind. it may be integrated into the main cell phone chip, or be a separate computer chip.

A better and/or faster processor allows apps to run faster. Raw processor speed is measured in MHz or GHz. (1 GHz = 1,000 MHz.) However some processors are more powerful than others, so even if two different processors both run at 1 GHz, if one is more powerful, it may run software apps much faster.

Other factors often affect the perceived speed of a phone. For example, the wireless radio and network determine how quickly data downloads. Also, phones may have a separate graphics processor (GPU) that determines the speed of visual elements, especially with games and other areas with complex animations.

See: GPU

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