In the build-up to the Mobile World Conference – MWC, 27th of Feb to the 1st of March – and the inevitable release of their Medfield mobile phone CPU Intel has announced its partners. Working with Intel to turn its raw chips – Z2460 Medfield system on-chip – into Smartphones initially will be Motorola and Lenovo. LG, after demonstrating working handsets at CES has gone surprisingly quiet on the subject though.
The manufacturing partners are working closely with Intel to ensure that handsets are available on the official release date. Intel is still to announce a specific date for the release, officially they are still publicly stating that the release will be early in 2012. Here at Highpants we have had a group stab in the dark and we expect the phones to be released at or just after the MWC. Lenovo had been demonstrating their Racer A Intel based mobile phone at CES, which were already fast and stable. Intel wants this release to be all it can be so the only thing we can guarantee is that if the chips aren’t 100% Intel won’t rush them out the door.
Motorola Mobility, soon to be a part of Google, and Lenovo are the first two official Intel Mobile Phone partners, both have working handsets that are being tested, with various photos of these supposedly secret phones appearing around the web at the moment.
Motorola’s Intel based smartphone is running their latest swish custom interface MotionBlur over the top of – Ice Cream Sandwich -,ICS -. From the leaked pictures appearing around the web the Motorola handset appears to be completely buttonless and quite thin. This may dispel the rumours that the Medfield chips run hot.
LG were also demonstrating Intel smartphones at CES in January but there is no mention of them as release partners. We wonder if it has anything to do with an LG executive stating at CES that the Medfield release would be in March.
Intel’s Medfield is a new direction for Intel, the chip has from the ground up been designed to sip power. Intel mobile phones all feature Near Field Communications – NFC -for quick purchases, HDMI output, Blu-Ray playback and an 8MP camera, with the ability to support up to 16MP. The camera also features a very slick quick start up for that opportunistic photo along with an impressive 15 frames per second burst mode. The latest demonstration phones are running Android 4 ICS while demonstrations before CES we generally running the earlier Android 3.4 Gingerbread. Progress is being made obviously.
In a related announcement Intel this week also demonstrated their RosePoint technology that integrates analogue radio functions into the CPU , or SOC chip if you will. Qualcomm, one of the leaders in this field have already integrated the various Wi-Fi and 3G radio circuitry into their mobile phone processors. A strategy that saves a lot of power and reduces costs.
The Smartphone Wars are about to heat up dramatically, with intense competition from Apple, ARM and NVIDIA the mighty Intel knows it is going to have a fight on its hands, this is without a doubt the most competitive electronics market there is. To this end Intel appears to be going for a perfect product launch, they know they don’t need to be shooting themselves in the foot, there will be enough competition trying to gun them down as it is.
Reference: Intel Medfield