Yesterday at MWC in Barcelona, ASUS announced the third generation of the Padfone, the PadFone Infinity. Like the previous Padfone(s), the PadFone Infinity is packed to the brim with features and power. Internally, the PadFone is powered by a 1.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 SoC, and 2GB of RAM with either 32 or 64GB of on-board storage.
ASUS has also bumped the display size on the Infinity to 5-inches and increased the resolution to 1080p (1920*1080) as well. On the connectivity and sensors side, the PadFone Infinity includes everything that is possible including GLONASS, DC-HSPA+, GPS and NFC. ASUS has used a 13MP sensor on the back of the PadFone that consists of a five-element plastic F/2.0 lens. There is also a 2MP snapper in the front for all your video calling needs. The 2400mAh battery inside the PadFone will be more than enough to get you through a day on 3G. Do keep in mind that the PadFone uses a nanoSIM instead of a microSIM. The handset will be running a near stock version of Android 4.2 Jelly Bean when it will be released.
Like always, ASUS has unveiled the PadFone with a dock – the FonePad – that complements the handset. Using the FonePad, PadFone owners can easily convert their handset into a full-blown tablet.
ASUS does not expect to release the PadFone in the United States, and will be selling the PadFone+FonePad bundle for £799 / €999, when it releases the device in Europe this April.
ZTE has surprised everyone at the Mobile World Congress by announcing the ZTE Grand Memo, a 5.7-inch competitor to Samsung’s Galaxy Note. The surprising part about the Grand Memo is that it is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 800 SoC running at 1.5GHz. The Snapdragon 800 SoC was initially expected to show up in devices in the second half of this year, but ZTE states that it will be launching the Grand Memo in March in China, and a month after that in Europe.
The 5.7-inch display on the Grand Memo is a disappointment though, as it has 720p resolution compared to 1080p, which is quickly becoming the norm nowadays. The 8.9mm thin phablet sports a 13MP shooter at its back, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage, a microSD card slot, LTE connectivity and a beefy 3200 mAh battery. The Grand Memo runs on Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean out of the box with ZTE’s own MyFavorite UX on top of it.
ZTE plans to aggressively promote the Grand Memo and have its presence feel outside of China. However, the Chinese OEM does not intend on bringing the Grand Memo to the United States anytime soon.
UPDATE: Either ZTE lied or there was a huge confusion that led to this huge blunder. The ZTE Grand Memo does not sport Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 SoC, and is instead powered by the S4 Pro (APQ8064) — the same SoC that powers the Nexus 4, DROID DNA and Butterfly.
Nvidia is not the only one unveiling ultra-fast SoCs at CES. Qualcomm joined in on the SoC fun with the announcement of its new mobile SoCs. The company once again ditched its naming convention. This means its time to forget about the Qualcomm S3, S4 and S4 Pro SoCs. Instead, the company has renamed its upcoming mobile SoCs to a much simpler – Snapdragon 600 and Snapdragon 800.
The Snapdragon 600 picks up where the Qualcomm S4 Pro, found inside the likes of the DROID DNA and the Nexus 4, left. The Snapdragon 600 will feature a quad-core Krait 300 CPU with speeds of up to 1.9GHz per core, an Adreno 320 GPU, and LPDDR3 RAM. The press release from Qualcomm states that the Snapdragon 600 will be up to 40% percent faster than S4 Pro SoCs. The best part is that Snapdragon 600 SoC based devices will start showing up by Summer of this year.
If the Snapdragon 600 is fast, its bigger brother – Snapdragon 800 – takes things to a completely new level. The Snapdragon 800 will sport a quad-core Krait 400 CPU, with each core capable of clocking up to 2.3GHz. It will also sport a faster Adreno 330 GPU, UltraHD (4096*2304) resolution support, dual-channel LPDDR3 RAM support, dual ISPs for support for up to 55MP sensors, and finally, support for DTS-HD, Dolby Digital Plus and 7.1 surround sound. Qualcomm states that Snapdragon 800 will be up to 75% faster compared to S4 Pro. Devices using Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 should hit the shelves sometime in the second half of 2013.
It will be really interesting to see how the newer Qualcomm’s Snapdragon SoCs stack up against the quad-core Cortex-A15 based SoCs like Tegra 4 and Samsung’s Exynos 5.
Yesterday, ASUS sent out invites for its October 16th event to be held in Taipei, Taiwan and Milan, Italy, where the company would be unveiling the Padfone 2. Just a day later, the packaging and full specs of the handset have been revealed, thanks to a member of Mobile01 forums.
From the specs, the ASUS Padfone 2 looks like its going to be a complete beast. The handset will be powered by a quad-core Snapdragon S4 Krait (APQ8064) SoC, an Adreno 320 GPU, 2GB of RAM, a 13MP snapper at the back with Zero Shutter lag aided by an LED flash, a 1.2MP front-facing camera, LTE, and a super bright IPS+ 4.7-inch display with 720p (1280×720) resolution. The other usual features like Wi-Fi b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS with A-GPS, MHL port and a microSD card slot are also present.
The Padfone 2 also manages to pack in a beefy 2140mAh battery inside its relatively slim 9mm waistline. The specs sheet of the Padfone 2 easily rivals the LG Optimus G and the Galaxy S III, and if ASUS manages to execute the phone-tablet-laptop idea perfectly this time, they might have a winner in their hands.
Earlier in the year, we saw benchmarks where Qualcomm‘s Snapdragon dual-core S4 Pro chipsets comfortably outperformed quad-core mobile chipsets from the likes of NVidia. Now, Qualcomm is ready with its quad-core S4 Pro chips, and as you might expect, it literally demolishes its competitors.
Engadget has managed to get its hands on the Snapdragon APQ8064, which was announced at the Mobile World Congress 2012 held in Barcelona. The new Snapdragon S4 towers above its competitors, almost doubling its score in the CF-Bench CPU benchmark. The Galaxy SIII with its Exynos chipset is the APQ8064’s toughest competitor, but it is also handsomely defeated in all the tests.
| S4 Pro MDP (APQ8064)|| Nexus 7 (Tegra 3)|| Galaxy S III (Exynos 4412)|| One X (Tegra 3)|| Galaxy S III (AT&T, MSM8960)|| One X (AT&T, MSM8960)|
| Quadrant|| 7,698|| 3,501|| 4,454|| 4,906|| 5,084|| 4,784|
| Vellamo|| 2,538|| 1,650|| 1,751|| 1,617|| 2,153|| 2,259|
| AnTuTu|| 13,826|| 8,995|| 11,960|| 11,030|| 6,713|| 6,956|
| SunSpider 0.9.1 (ms)|| 1,227|| 1,785|| 1,460|| 1,773|| 1,926|| 1,453|
| GLBenchmark Egypt Offscreen (fps)|| 132|| 63|| 99|| 63|| 54|| 56|
| CF-Bench|| 18,219|| 11,807|| 13,110|| 13,233|| 9,439|| 9,479|
| SunSpider: lower scores are better|
The biggest question now is how power efficient is the new quad-core S4 Pro. Thanks to its impressive architecture and fabrication, I suspect that it will be at the very least as power efficient as NVidia’s Tegra 3, but we will have to wait to know for sure. So far none of the manufactures have announced any APQ8064 based devices; however, I would expect the quad-core S4 Pro to begin showing up in tablets and phones by this year’s holiday season. Given that all the big-name manufactures have already announced their flagships for this year, it is more likely that the APQ8064 will first begin appearing in tablets.
(Image via Engadget)
Acer just announced the Iconia Smart at the on-going MWC (Mobile World Congress) in Barcelona. Like the Dell Streak, the Iconia Smart is a mash-up of a tablet and a smartphone.
The Acer Iconia Smart sports a 4.8-inch display with a resolution a HXGA (1024×480) resolution. The phone has a wide aspect ratio of 21:9 and also features Dolby surround sound technology.
The handset will have a unibody metal casing and will be available only in silver. The Iconia is powered by a 1GHz Snapdragon processor along with 512MB of RAM and 8GB of internal memory. The back of the phone sports an 8MP camera with a LED flash while the front of the phone houses a 2MP camera. The camera at the back of the device will be capable of recording videos in 720p HD resolution.
The usual Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, Accelerometer, Gyroscope, DLNA and a mini-HDMI port are also present. The handset will run on Android 2.3 Gingerbread with Acer’s Breeze UI v4 on top of it. The phone also supports Flash 10.1.
Sadly, Acer did not mention anything about the pricing and the availability of the handset.
The big news coming from CES 2011 is that the next version of Windows will support ARM processors and SoC. At CES 2011, Microsoft demonstrated a range of devices running Windows 8 and Office on the SoC architecture.
SoC chips are small i n size and are designed for mobile computing devices such as tablets and mobile phones. Qualcomm’s famous Snapdragon is an example of a SoC. At the demo, SoC from Qualcomm, Intel, Nvidia, Texas Instruments were shown running the next version of Windows.
Microsoft showed a 1080 HD video being played on these tiny chips and even connected a printer with Microsoft Office by updating the ARM driver for Windows.
Image Credit: Long Zheng
We reported earlier that LG’s upcoming phone E900 which will be sporting Windows Phone 7 has been spotted. Android.com.pl came up with good quality pictures of the LG E900 and a video of the WP 7 UI running on it.
The LG E900 is reported to have a 3.7inch TFT capacitive touchscreen. The processor inside is Qualcomm QSD8650. There are some rumors that suggest that the processor is QSD8650A. The difference between QSD8650 and QSD8650A is that the first one will have a clock speed of 1GHz, while the next will have a clockspeed of 1.3GHz. It will also have a microUSB slot and a 3.5mm audio slot.
Other common features like Wi-Fi, GPS and Bluetooth will be present. The price of this phone is reported to be between $300-400 which is very cheap considering the hardware.
Here is the video:
Qualcomm will start shipping the fastest Snapdragon processor by Q4 2010. Qualcomm CDMA Technologies’ Mark Frankel, Vice President of product management said that the company will start shipping the dual-core QSD8672 chip by Q4. The dual-core QSD8672 chip has clock speed of 1.5GHz.
Mark Frankel said that this chip will be used in smartphones, tablets and net books. Devices with this CPU inside will be available in early 2011. He also added that aggressive vendors can release devices “by Christmas” this year.
The new QSD8672 chip is a follow up of the previous dual core MSM8660 chip which has a clock speed of 1.2GHz. The QSD8672 chip is based on ARM design and will be made using the 45nm fabrication process. It will also have a 1080p video playback support. It will also have integrated HDMI support, DDR2 and DDR3 memory support.
The company said that this new chip will be power efficient. A new feature which this chip will possess is called individual voltage scaling. By this feature the dual core chip can keep one core idle while the other running at full speed, thus saving power.
Let us see which company will be the first to put this beast in their device.
Remember the HTC Vision we told you about? Well, according to the latest information from Engadget it looks like the HTC Vision is headed to T-Mobile with a different name. The handset is expected to be renamed to HTC G1 Blaze and will be sold under the T-Mobile network.
The HTC Vision/G1 Blaze packs in a 1 GHz Snapdragon processor, and a 3.7-inch (AMOLED/S-LCD) screen with a 480×800 resolution. The device will be running on Android 2.1 when launched. The phone is also expected to pack in 1.2Gb of onboard memory. The T-Mobile name of the Vision G1 Blaze looks like a tribute to the first Android phone – the G1.
HTC Vision/G1 Blaze is expected to hit the UK in October. Hopefully, we will see HTC release more QWERTY keyboard based high-end Android phones in the future.