It's not surprising really that ARM is driving innovation in the mobile semi-conductor world. They continue to design cutting edge new technology that is far more energy efficient than the competition. Their newest example is the big.LITTLE architecture technology, which combines the use of both Cortex-A15 and Cortex-A7 processors to deliver performance and efficiency when needed. Besides their famous partnership with Samsung on the big.LITTLE tech, ARM has just announced that five additional semi-conductor companies that will be partnering with them to use it, including CSR, Fujitsu Semiconductor and MediaTek.
Here's a quote with some additional detail,
It will be interesting to see the processor wars heat up over this year.Will the big.LITTLE architecture make a difference? Almost certainly yes. If ARMís data is right then the A15 is about twice as fast as the A7 but the A7 is three times more energy efficient that the Cortex-A15, so switching to the A7 (which itself is running at a respectable 1.2Ghz) for lesser tasks should produce a power saving of up to 70%.
It is interesting to note that the performance of the smartphone has increased 60 fold since 2000 and 12 fold since 2008.