Early Atom Chips On Par with Modern ARM Processors
Phoronix compared a group of devices with Intel and ARM processors. Ubuntu Linux 12.04 alpha was used as the OS for running a bevy of benchmarks. Ubuntu is an obvious choice as there are several versions of the OS that are optimized for both architecture.
The benchmarks are not perfect though as the the hardware used were not really comparable but the results are somewhat interesting, nevertheless. The ARM-based machine was one of the newest Texas Instruments have and was pitted against a PC with the oldest Atom chipset.
The system with 1GHz TI OMPA dual core processor came ahead against the netbook running Intel Atom N270 at 1.6GHz, only in some benchmarks.
The OMAP is pitifully slow in encoding video with FFMPEG but is as fast as the Atom machine with H.264 video encoding. The ARM -based gadget came out leading in the audio encoding tests and other benchmarks.
Depending on your needs, the modern ARM-based CPU might be the same as your four-year old x86 processor. The truth is, modern Atom chips are not much faster than those released back on 2008, even if they are already dual cores.
We could find netbooks, nettops and low-powered desktops that are armed with ARM one day. Certainly, Linux are not the only OS, productive OS that is, that can run both on ARM and x86 processors. Windows 8 does too.