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Intel-Powered Smartphones Arriving Soon

Unknown Lamer posted more than 2 years ago | from the pocket-heating-device dept.

Cellphones 182

adeelarshad82 writes "After years of promises to enter the smartphone market, Intel has finally done so. During his keynote at CES, Intel's Chief executive Paul Otellini said that Intel has signed Lenovo and Motorola to contracts to use its Atom processors in smartphones. Unlike past launches, Intel has held Medfield back until its partners were ready to go to press as well. According to an early preview, Medfield pairs a 1.6GHz Atom CPU with an SGX540 GPU designed by PowerVR. This is the same GPU we've seen tip up in the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and Droid Razr, though Intel is clocking it higher, at 400MHz. Intel's new SoC encodes video at 720p at 30 fps, can playback 1080p at 30 fps, and supports 1920×1080 output via HDMI. The first smartphone to carry an Intel chip will debut on China Unicom during the second quarter."

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You haven't entered the market (3, Interesting)

symbolset (646467) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665000)

You haven't entered the market until the phones are available at retail. I would like to see this, but it hasn't happened yet and the announcement is premature.

I would like to see these phones on sale in the US. It would probably be my next phone, as I'm due for one in the fall.

Re:You haven't entered the market (5, Insightful)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665152)

You haven't entered the market until the phones are available at retail.

If the market at issue is the retail market for cellphones, there might be some validity to that. The market Intel is actually entering is the market for supplying processors to smartphone manufacturers, which they've entered as soon as they have a product available for those manufacturers to order.

Re:You haven't entered Africa (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665452)

niggers

Re:You haven't entered Africa (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665568)

One of these days, you're going to goof up. You're going to forget to click the Post Anonymously checkbox. You hear me, Richard Stallman? We're on to you!

Re:You haven't entered Africa (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665570)

No, most of them won't be able to afford the phone.

Re:You haven't entered the market (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665178)

Intel supplies chips, not phones. Intel is now selling their chips to smartphone manufacturers, meaning they are in the smartphone chip supply market.

Title fail then (0)

symbolset (646467) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665326)

I recall an instance where third party chipsets were better, but Intel wanted to make a market for their chipsets. They priced the CPU + chipset lower than the CPU bare. OEMs just bought the pair and threw away the chipsets. Somebody correct me if my recall is flawed.

We shall see.

Re:You haven't entered the market (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665340)

You haven't entered the market until the phones are available at retail. I would like to see this, but it hasn't happened yet and the announcement is premature.

I would like to see these phones on sale in the US. It would probably be my next phone, as I'm due for one in the fall.

As far as I'm concerned, it's like announcing yet another car which runs on gas.

Processors .. woop de doo. Better operating systems / apps are more important (plus compatibility to standards)

Re:You haven't entered the market (4, Insightful)

gregrah (1605707) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665454)

Agreed that Intel entering the smartphone market is not going to have the same impact on smartphone users as the announcement of a new or improved OS, for example. However, as consumers we are all likely to benefit from the competition.

As an Intel shareholder, though, I am very excited by this announcement.

Re:You haven't entered the market (0)

Anne Thwacks (531696) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666330)

However, as consumers we are all likely to benefit from the increased power consumption.

There, thats fixed it for you.

Re:You haven't entered the market (2)

Mister Whirly (964219) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666246)

Funny, that used to be the thinking at Apple until they switched to Intel chips. Then suddenly their machines were running circles around the old Power PC chips that had been previously touted as superior to Intel's chips.

Re:You haven't entered the market (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665854)

Of course. This is the "marketing" and hype part of the process: announcing the product months before it's even available.

Intel really really hopes they can enter this strongly, the reality is that the atom processors are not going to compete well with android as they aren't even going to be compatible with apps out the door (as apps aren't all programmed for x86).

Had Intel actually used the arm license they themselves purchased, that would have been a wiser decision.

Re:You haven't entered the market (4, Informative)

wed128 (722152) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666518)

Most android apps are java; very few use any arm-specific code at all. They should run fine on android-x86 (which exists already BTW)

the specs and benchies are a YAWN (-1, Offtopic)

alen (225700) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665020)

the Apple A6 and other new ARM CPU's that will hit this year will wipe the floor with medfield.

powervr 540? CRAPPOLA. Apple is already at 543 and is going next generation PowerVR in 2012

intel should be making these on 22nm and new products being released now, not months from now. but they have some financial software telling them that Core CPU's have more profit than SoC's and will lose market share little by little just like Sun and all the other CPU makers from the 1990's that were only in the high end.

Mark my words in the next 5 years ARM is going to have a CPU good enough for a laptop. the cost structure of Wintel will make this a huge financial/profit opportunity for laptop makers who will dump intel for most of their products except the high end where you need the power for dev/gaming or whatever.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (5, Interesting)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665122)

"Wintel"? Focusing on Apple products? Fanboi much?

MS is moving to an platform of ARM/x86 cross compatibility, and Apple uses Intel on it's notebook products, so really, the only focus here is Intel, but some how you have to add Windows to it anyway?

Trying to figure out if your post is a subtle troll, or you are really just that obsessed...

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (-1, Troll)

alen (225700) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665284)

and how many Windows 8 tablets have been sold?

between iOS and Android there are hundreds of millions of ARM devices sold every year. The Samsung Galaxy S2 is more powerful than phones with medfield will be and that's also a year old. Medfield is crap unless it's a free on contract phone

if you look at a $500 PC a good guess is $200 or so goes to Intel/Microsoft. CPU/OS/motherboard/chipset etc. if you can build a laptop that does say 95% of what most people do on a laptop or desktop, sell it for $500 but have it cost less to build due to it not being powered by Intel then it's going to get built and sold. and that day will come soon. won't be good for most gaming/dev work but 99% of the people won't care.

there are rumors of ARM powered Apple laptops. Apple is developing based on this strategy. they need a cheaper computer but not at the expense of margins. at some point the numbers for a ARM powered laptop will line up to where they can sell it and make a lot of money and they will do it at the expense of Intel.

the evidence is there. custom CPU design. Mac app store which is filled with expensive iOS versions of a lot of software.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665440)

I'll sell you some Windows 8 tablets, PM me

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665600)

Does it come with a bridge? I really want a bridge!

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665466)

How can any have been sold, it hasn't been developed yet. A better comparison would be Windows 7 Phone, which has sold some (not much, but some). Moving in any direction always requires a first step. MS is moving to the cloud with many apps, so you can add a client-architecture irrelevance to the list of things easing the move. Just as many users don't care about dev/gaming, they also, sadly, don't care/realize the dangers of the cloud.

Mind you, 5 years from now is a long time, it look less time than that for Apple to go from an all-Power architecture to mostly using x86s with some Power stuff for legacy purposes only. And they didn't use any cloud crap. Why couldn't MS do the same switch?

Harming Intel 5 years down the road does not necessarily harm MS, and vice versa.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

Locutus (9039) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665782)

the problem with ARM PC's for Microsoft is that people will think they can install x86 apps on them and they can't. Apple, by virtue of their costs tend to be used by more educated people and because of the smaller market share had/have fewer head aches dealing with migrations. Making the iPad enabled to run iPhone apps was very smart on Apple and Microsoft can't really do that with the market share Windows Phone phones have.

I doubt very much we'll see anything running ARM SoCs which look like a PC(desktop or laptop) and runs Windows 8 for ARM. Metro is the UI and API they need to get cross CPU and cross device applications and without widespread use of that a Windows for ARM PC will just drive the public nuts as they find out there existing software will not work and there's nothing like it available. Maybe in 5 years but looking at Android and Apple's iOS you have to wonder if they can even get to 20% market share in the phone segment in that time.

Had Linux on desktops done better we might see some ARM PCs but you know how the years of the Linux desktop has gone.

LoB

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666172)

They don't seem to be trying very hard to avoid the implicit customer confusion either. It seems like they're yearning for the backlash. This should be fun.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1, Interesting)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665754)

and how many Windows 8 tablets have been sold?

Huh? Win8 isn't even shipping. How could any be sold?

sell it for $500 but have it cost less to build due to it not being powered by Intel then it's going to get built and sold. and that day will come soon. won't be good for most gaming/dev work but 99% of the people won't care.

Why do iPads sell well? Because there are lots of applications and you can do lots of good stuff.

Why do Windows computers sell well? Because there are lots of applications and you can do lots of good stuff.

A non-intel laptop is going to take a long time to come up to speed once people realize there isn't a wealth of applications available. It's the same reason all those cheap Linux boxes at Dell and Wal-Mart fail - People realize they can't run apps and return them.

Developers code apps for the most common platforms - Right now that platform is x86, and will be for the foreseeable future.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (2)

JazzLad (935151) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666094)

> A non-intel laptop is going to take a long time to come up to speed once people realize there isn't a wealth of applications available.

Did AMD stop making chips, or just laptop ones? Hmm, neither apparently [amd.com] .

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666158)

Did AMD stop making chips

Sigh.

OK, you got me. Aren't you so smart?

"Non x86." blah blah blah.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38666238)

Well he is right. Using 'intel' to mean x86 is like using 'ford' to mean 'American automobile'.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38666496)

AMD and Intel both use IA-32 chips... what does IA mean? Intel Architecture 32 bit.

Just like ARM means chips by TI, nVidia, Samsung or any other manufactures... Saying Intel means anything using the IA-32!

Some people are idiots.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (2)

danbob999 (2490674) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666570)

Intel means Intel.
IA-32 isn't really used. We call this x86.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

tripleevenfall (1990004) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665162)

I was thinking that the boast about encoding in 720p at 30fps already puts it behind the curve of present-day Apple mobile chips, let alone what will be available later this year with the next iteration of the iPhone.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665228)

intel should be making these on 22nm and new products being released now,

I think the reason they don't is because 22nm requires more power to operate at a high speed.

Mark my words in the next 5 years ARM is going to have a CPU good enough for a laptop. the cost structure of Wintel will make this a huge financial/profit opportunity for laptop makers

I don't think this matters. The CPU is not why laptops are expensive, so even if some ARM manufacturer manages to match Intel in performance (unlikely), what motivation is there to dump all your legacy software that only runs on Intel?

Also, if AMD couldn't overtake Intel with chips that were at times superior, why do you think VIA or Qualcomm could?

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

alen (225700) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665314)

at this point the iOS and android software catalogs are large enough that it's not an issue. developers will build on that.

ARM laptops won't run current PC games or do dev work but 99% of people don't care. Angry Birds has as many customers as Call of Duty games if not more. the hardcore gamer market is tapped out and the next gaming frontier is casual gaming with less emphasis on blood and gore

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665498)

at this point the iOS and android software catalogs are large enough that it's not an issue. developers will build on that.

No, it is an issue. Do you really want to buy a new copy of Photoshop and Microsoft Office, just because of some dubious processor change? Are they really going to use "Pages" on their iPhone? Intel is a marketing genius.....when it comes to processors, all most people know about is "Intel Inside." They don't care about RISC, but they DO care when their software stops working. That includes people at home who were stupid enough to pay $50 for Word Perfect that came bundled with their computer.

The only way ARM will overtake x86 is if smartphones overtake traditional computers. There just isn't a reason strong enough to motivate people to switch to ARM.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

alen (225700) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665692)

and how many regular home users buy Photoshop? how about spending $300 to upgrade their trial of MS office they got.

95% to 99% of computer users do
internet
email
light document work for which google apps, pages or the other apps out there are more than good enough
photo editing - there are photo editing apps in both markets and as long as they are as good enough as the current version of iphoto it will be good enough for most people

Asus has a good idea with the Transformer tablet but they are marketing it wrong. they are trying to sell on specs to the power user who will still always buy an intel based laptop. and selling it with the dock for $500 is a money loser. that's why i said give it a few years. 3-5 max would be my guess. of course apple will probably get there first with a major release

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665710)

Yeah, I heard that from apple fanbois a couple years ago, "iOS has all the apps, nobody will build for android" how's that turning out?

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38666604)

Yeah, I heard that from apple fanbois a couple years ago, "iOS has all the apps, nobody will build for android" how's that turning out?

Quite well thank you.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (3, Informative)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665380)

intel should be making these on 22nm and new products being released now,

I think the reason they don't is because 22nm requires more power to operate at a high speed.

??? How's that happen, typically the lower the process size, the lower the energy use for the same design (and the higher possible clock speed before heat issues occur).

Mark my words in the next 5 years ARM is going to have a CPU good enough for a laptop. the cost structure of Wintel will make this a huge financial/profit opportunity for laptop makers

I don't think this matters. The CPU is not why laptops are expensive, so even if some ARM manufacturer manages to match Intel in performance (unlikely), what motivation is there to dump all your legacy software that only runs on Intel?

Also, if AMD couldn't overtake Intel with chips that were at times superior, why do you think VIA or Qualcomm could?

The issue isn't cost, but performance. Even a low end x86 (except Atom and AMDs equivalent) can outperform an ARM chip significantly. Also, have you seen the price of replacement notebook CPUs? They are a lot more expensive than similar desktop CPUs. It's not the only reason they are more expensive, but it certainly is part of it.

ARM may in fact catch up to x86 - the question then is, will Intel focus more on their own ARM development? Performance focus has been moving from per-thread performance (where x86 is usually pretty good, and performance/watt is not necessarily a huge concern) to multi-threaded performance (where performance/watt can translate quite well, since you just have to add more cores to up the overall performance). I believe ARM is better at performance/watt than x86, so with ARM catching up on core count (and probably exceeding x86 soon), x86 may indeed lose it's lead. Of course, that only hurts Intel if they focus on x86.

Then again, I can see a slightly different future. Both multi-threaded and monolithic-threaded have their advantages. For notebooks (and maybe desktops/servers) I can see a primary ARM CPU handling most of the work, and an x86 (or Power, or whatever?) taking on the brute force stuff when needed, and otherwise powering down. Of course, applications and libraries will now need to store both ARM and x86 versions, and the OS will need to have code to allow cross talk between x86 and ARM at least at the cross-process level, but possibly even within processes themselves. Then again, that would be a huge undertaking and possibly not worth the effort.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666314)

Intel stopped focusing on ARM development when they sold XScale to Marvell.

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

RobertLTux (260313) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665424)

heck until we can have smartphones powered by liquid naquadah (or similar) the other specs are a yawner

BLUE MAN KREE!

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

Locutus (9039) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665622)

but you forget that the current laptop PC manufacturers will not touch anything which does not run Windows. Sure Windows will eventually run on ARM and could run on an ARM laptop but you do know that Microsoft controls what Windows gets installed on don't you? They aren't going to allow laptops with just the ARM chip to boot Windows on that even if it's only running Metro and the hardware manufacturers are not going to cross Microsoft.

Apple can pull it off because people know Apple controls everything from the music store, application store, OS and hardware. If Android picks up with a more feature rich application base it might work but again, you won't see standard hardware vendors who work with Microsoft making Linux or Android based hardware and cross Microsoft's path.

We might see ARM on servers but it would have to be specialty hardware to keep it from getting anywhere near what's considered a PC.

Intel has nothing to worry about in the PC market except for a diminishing roll of the PC(desktop and laptop) due to tablet use. Intel has to be in the tablet and phone market to even keep its market share stable. Going with PowerVR was a smart move but they have to keep up with power usage and Nvidia's Tegra 3 just changed the game with the 5th CPU under clocked.

LoB

Re:the specs and benchies are a YAWN (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666354)

We might see ARM on servers but it would have to be specialty hardware to keep it from getting anywhere near what's considered a PC.

It's here. [hp.com] Limited availability and high price as yet.

Too late (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665022)

Intel are way too late to this party. The whole mobile and world is ARM at this point, and the ecosystem has been built around it. Trotting out something that is essentially a decade old core and trying to get hardware and software developer to switch is fun to watch, but probably rather pointless now.

Not too late (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665174)

It's never too late to come out with something wonderful - to raise the bar - to redefine what people expect from their technology in ways that empower and delight and amaze. Is this it? We don't know yet. But it's not too late.

Re:Not too late (3, Funny)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665296)

It's never too late to come out with something wonderful - to raise the bar - to redefine what people expect from their technology in ways that empower and delight and amaze. Is this it? We don't know yet. But it's not too late.

I would just like to point out that handwarmers have been around for ages. Putting them in a cell phone is new, I'll grant you that.

Re:Not too late (0)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665358)

It's never too late to come out with something wonderful - to raise the bar - to redefine what people expect from their technology in ways that empower and delight and amaze.

An X86 chip? Talk about being hopelessly optimistic.

Re:Not too late (1)

minderbinder.milo (2550924) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665532)

Are you from planet Earth? Stuffing an x86 in cell phone and calling it an "advancement" is like heaping praise an automobile company who is able to somehow eek another 5mpg out of essentially an early-90's engine design. Sure...it's an "advancement" in the technical sense of the word...but the only purpose it serves is to perpetuate our ongoing addiction.

Re:Not too late (0)

symbolset (646467) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665856)

Intel has more to offer mobile than just x86.

Re:Not too late (1)

wed128 (722152) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666582)

They better.

Offering the mobile market x86 is like offering a vegetarian beef jerky. They don't want or need it.

The only reason x86 still exists is for application compatibility.

Re:Too late (2, Informative)

Guspaz (556486) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665898)

For the most part, they don't need to. Android has already been ported, and 75% of the apps for Android are written with the standard SDK, meaning they're cross-platform Java applets.

That leaves the 25% of remaining apps that are written with the NDK. Of those, most can be recompiled by the developer with minimal effort (the NDK supports building for x86 or ARM, and most apps wouldn't require any changes to recompile). Of those that can't, or aren't, Intel is going to be supplying binary translation software (read: emulation). That part won't run all that great, but it will run.

Basically, the point is that Android is particularly well-suited to switching between architectures because not much of it (or its apps) is architecture-dependent.

Another Headache (1)

na1led (1030470) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665042)

Great, another CPU for developers to deal with. This is why we have issues with compatibility between different devices. If they stick to Windows Platform then fine, but don't mess with Android - Please!

Android has the best chance for compatibility (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665066)

Provided it's all Java um- er- dalvick byte codes it should work either way,
modulo some minor surprises -- but it should be possible to get pretty
good compatibility.

Re:Another Headache (5, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665118)

I agree it adds an extra headache for developers, but I like multiple platforms conceptually, because it's an acid-test way of keeping developers from accidentally drifting into platform assumptions that they aren't really supposed to be making, and which will complicate things later. Sometimes even helps find bugs; back when they were more active (and still to some extent), the Debian ports to non-x86 platforms frequently helped uncover latent bugs that were just infrequently triggered on x86 for various coincidental reasons.

Re:Another Headache (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665974)

Why do you care about CPU architecture? If you write proper C/C++ code, you won't care because it's already portable, and is just a recompile away.

Re:Another Headache (1)

the linux geek (799780) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666550)

You mean loading up my codebase with #ifdefs to get around bullshit like endianness and integer length? "C/C++ is portable" is a myth.

one of those it's called K800 ... (1)

itsme1234 (199680) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665072)

... and there are a couple videos with it already where it runs some kind of (rather unresponsive) android.
I hope it's easy/possible to make it run whatever x86 OS you please.

Re:one of those it's called K800 ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665826)

I'm eagerly waiting for the T-800 s to come out to play.

what kind of power draw? (3, Interesting)

Trepidity (597) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665094)

Have they been able to get into power-draw ranges that'd make the battery life compatible with ARM-based devices?

Re:what kind of power draw? (3, Informative)

neelwebs (2547396) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665202)

I read on Anandtech that the power draw is comparable to ARM-based devices. http://www.anandtech.com/show/5365/intels-medfield-atom-z2460-arrive-for-smartphones [anandtech.com]

Re:what kind of power draw? (2)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665400)

Even if that's the case, comparable isn't enough. To inspire a switch of platform requires a generational improvement in something.

Re:what kind of power draw? (2)

symbolset (646467) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665446)

Well they claim "full buzzword compliance" and wireless display - which is a big add for me. That would be everything and something more. It should be interesting.

Re:what kind of power draw? (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665954)

Being an x86 CPU the performance should be better. Better performance at the same power draw? Sounds like an advantage. Although 2Ghz dual-core ARM CPUs are coming out now so it might not be that much.

What I'm looking forward to is the modding potential of portable devices running Win8. It's a regular x86 OS, so it should be pretty easy to install Linux on these things, more specifically Maemo, the best portable device OS ever! :D

Re:what kind of power draw? (1)

fnj (64210) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665738)

If 70% more power draw than an iPhone 4S playing back 720p was "comparable", I might be impressed.

Re:what kind of power draw? (1)

jmorris42 (1458) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665278)

That is their claim in the graphs in the article. Graphs that don't mention which competing devices are being compared and which have no numbers. But they are claiming to be middle of the pack in idle power consumption, which has always been the fatal flaw in x86 mobile devices until now. If they have really managed to get an x86 to idle at a couple of milliamps of current then they are probably in the hunt. If not, it is all bogus like an x86 tablet. Who wants a phone you have to charge daily even if you don't call or even light up the display? It is all about idle time with these more mobile devices, not how many HD frames you can push for the hour or so the battery can hold up.

Just talk faster (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666436)

Problem solved.

Thank goodness Intel rescuing all those poor folks (-1, Troll)

DarkOx (621550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665128)

I mean just as the government their is cracking down and blocking their access to dating and singing contest shows, carried on prime time television. Intel rides to the rescue on its white horse to deliver all the 1080p reality tv they can handle right to the palm of their hot little hands.

Only on God's flat disk.

Dated hardware? (2)

MatrixCubed (583402) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665132)

Having used (and seen the demise of) PowerVR hardware in the desktop (remember Kyro/Kyro II?) I'm glad to see them in the news regarding their technology being affluent in the mobile market. But the SGX540 is dated to 2007 (source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PowerVR#Series_5 [wikipedia.org] ). Did Intel get an amazing deal on GPU chips at the discount/liquidation bin, or is this a reliable strategy?

Re:Dated hardware? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665262)

Probably a cheap way to lower power consumption.

Dull Specs, but battery life? (4, Insightful)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665216)

720p video encoding, 1080p video decoding and 1080p via HDMI are considered stunning features?

Heck, Apple's been conservative, and the iPhone 4s has got 1080p video encoding, 1080p video decode and 1080p via HDMI. Androids have had it in 2010-2011 (and were mocking Apple the whole time).

So... the bigger question is - what's the battery life? The performance looks spectacular, but x86 is a notable power hog. And more worringly, I see nothing in the articles about battery life, power consumption, or battery size.

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (2)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665338)

I know I might be asking a stupid question, but what pocket device on the market has a 1920x1080 display?

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665418)

none yet, but many devices have an HDMI out port which can be plugged into screens of that resolution

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665464)

Additionally having a device that supports 1080p, even if the display has a lower resolution, is nice since you don't need to resize videos to work on your phone.

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (1)

BlackSnake112 (912158) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666566)

Additionally having a device that supports 1080p, even if the display has a lower resolution, is nice since you don't need to resize videos to work on your phone.

If the phone's display size is smaller, how can it display the 1080p without resizing? No resizing needed for external display, fine. But on the device itself with a non 1080p screen? It has to resize to display.

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (3, Informative)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665484)

1080p decode is useful for two things:
1) Decoding 1080p media and scaling it down to the display in real time, eliminating the need for a reencode. It's inefficient and a waste of space, but still - in some use case it's better than reencoding before loading to the device
2) HDMI output

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (1)

Kartu (1490911) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665486)

I'd rather ask "which pocket device on the market has lens that deserve 1920x1080 resolution"

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (1)

JazzLad (935151) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666184)

Most of the video I watch on my android was not shot on my (or anyone else's) phone. I'l love a screen that high res, although I'd want it much larger than the standard 3-4"

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38666254)

I'd rather ask "which pocket device on the market has lens that deserve 1920x1080 resolution"

That's only 2 megapixels...

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665616)

HDMI out, sir.

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665744)

None. But the convenience of not having to scale 1080p movies to play on your 720p device is a plus. 1080p output via HDMI is also key.

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (2)

AmberBlackCat (829689) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665888)

People are buying cables that let them plug their phones into their televisions.

Example [amazon.com]

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (1)

Vijaysj (1003992) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665398)

Comparing SoC to SoC, OMAP4 had this for a few years now

Re:Dull Specs, but battery life? (1)

Idbar (1034346) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665554)

The problem with "battery life", at least to me is how do they benchmark this. When I first got an iPhone 3, battery life sucked for what I played with the phone, It lasted 2 hours.

My Galaxy S needs to be charged every night, but overall when I play a lot with the phone, it lasts enough to go through the day.

It may be that I do less or that battery lasts more or the battery is larger (now I see phones with 1800mAh instead of 1000mAh, from a couple of years back).

So I think there's a lot to be analyzed and most likely it will end up being an issue of a large display draining the battery while playing Angry Birds for most of the users.

I guess I'll wait and check my self, as I had to do with most of my devices so far.

FFS... (4, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665232)

Why do people(TFS and TFA notably not excluded) insist on talking about the part in terms of its GPU performance?

Let's see here... Intel is throwing their hat into the ARM-level power arena... we could discuss how fast their processor is, or we could do a bunch of irrelevant jabbering about how fast the SGX540 that virtually everybody licenses from PowerVR is... Hmm. Hey, let's focus on the part that everybody already knows about and make it even more fascinating by not discussing power for GPU operations; but encode and decode of some (unspecified; but quite possibly a restricted baseline of H.264) 'HD Video' format, and the maximum output resolution!

It's actually a pretty impressive way to natter on about the product without the slightest mention of what may or may not make it interesting. In other news, it is probably made of silicon, and in some sort of density-optimized epoxy package!

Re:FFS... (4, Funny)

Sez Zero (586611) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665332)

In other news, it is probably made of silicon, and in some sort of density-optimized epoxy package!

But will it have rounded corners? And shiny? Will it be shiny?!?

Re:FFS... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665384)

It needs to be shiny and blinky or you can count me out...

Re:FFS... (1)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665420)

I vote for shiny too.

Re:FFS... (1)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665512)

Will it be shiny?!?

It will come in Zune brown.

Re:FFS... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665364)

My god! A density-optimized epoxy package?

Re:FFS... (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665428)

So, fungus, start discussing it...

Re:FFS... (1)

Guspaz (556486) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665944)

Because it's relevant to the viability of the platform. The SGX540 is not particularly modern or competitive, so it holds back the rest of the platform. The fact that Intel is also licensing a third-party GPU (and talking about their future migration to the SGX543, also third-party) rather than using their own GPU is not particularly reassuring.

As a pure CPU, Medfield looks pretty decent. As an SoC, it's unimpressive. There's way more to an SoC than the CPU.

Re:FFS... (1)

Vegemeister (1259976) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666386)

The fact that Intel is also licensing a third-party GPU (and talking about their future migration to the SGX543, also third-party) rather than using their own GPU is not particularly reassuring.

Considering it's Intel... that's very reassuring.

Good, hope to see... (3, Interesting)

unique_parrot (1964434) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665302)

... an android x86 avd for eclipse soon, which - i expect - should be much faster that the arm emulator !!

PowerVR? (4, Insightful)

jginspace (678908) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665350)

PowerVR drivers [fsf.org] anyone?

Re:PowerVR? (1)

Guspaz (556486) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665988)

I'd just be happy if PowerVR would release (or bundle) their full OpenGL drivers; nobody other than Intel has licensed them, so all we get is OpenGL ES. Which is nice for apps written specifically for it, but few things in a generic Linux distro are.

Also, I'd be happy if I could get vsync working on my OMAP4430.

Re:PowerVR? (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666014)

This is the nastiest sticking point in mobile hackability. Pretty much everything smaller than a netbook has a PowerVR GPU and if you get an unfixable binary blob driver for your OS of choice from them, you should consider yourself lucky.

THOSE LUCKY CHINESE BASTARDS !! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665432)

Unicorns and Intel smartphone and communism. What more could a fella want ??

This is good, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38665456)

hopefully it means I can code low level without big headaches switching to new tools for other hardware architectures.

++ for distro choice! (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665660)

That's the big deal to me. For a phone to eventually become a serious notebook and desktop alternative it needs to run an appropriate OS and make use of the vast existing application base.

Re:++ for distro choice! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38666138)

All of the phones in my home already do. Splashtop and/or VNC makes my phones Linux, OSX and Windows compatible.

Unless you can play World of Warcraft on it... (1)

Phil_at_EvilNET (569379) | more than 2 years ago | (#38665718)

...what's the point?

Re:Unless you can play World of Warcraft on it... (2)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666060)

You could probably port Wine to Android-x86 with some effort, so WoW is not off-limits.

What phone-centered software runs on x86? (1)

ravenscar (1662985) | more than 2 years ago | (#38666334)

Correct me if I'm wrong (and I could be), but AFAIK there is no strong ecosystem for x86 software that is geared toward usage on a touch-screen phone. Granted, Win8 will run X86 and will probably garner some touch-oriented software for the small screen, but it doesn't exist yet. So if I get one of these phones which 'apps' will I run? I suppose there is the Android x86 port, but I would imagine that most of the existing Android apps would fail in that environment.

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