MediaTek a manufacturer of mobile semiconductors, announced this week a new Android platform that will bring Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich to users at entry and mid-level prices. While we all love spec sheet busting high end smartphones, the majority of users are purchasing mid-level and entry-level priced devices, and MediaTek with their new platform is set to bring all the benefits of ICS to the masses.
The mid-level devices will feature a 1Ghz ARM A9 SoC, an 8MP camera with 720p HD video recording/playback, on a qHD (960x540) display, and feature a PowerVR SGX Series 5 GPU with the ability to power 3D displays. The platform will run on 3G/HSPA networks and feature dual SIM capabilities. While those specs aren't the best to date they are more than adequate for all, but the hard-core users.
MediaTek has already partnered on a number of Google TV projects and shown they can develop a viable mobile platform. The platform will be available this quarter and it will be a benefit to the Android community as a whole to see more devices running Android 4.0 the latest version of the OS. The more devices on the new OS means more apps being developed for it and less fragmentation across the board. Hopefully things brings more devices up to date as Android continues to move forward.
MediaTek Launches MT6575 Android Platform
New platform addresses the growing market for mid and entry-level smartphones
TAIWAN, Hsinchu - 13 February, 2012 - MediaTek Inc., a leading fabless semiconductor company for wireless communications and digital multimedia solutions, today announced the availability of the MT6575, its 3rd generation platform for mid and entry-level Android smartphones. The MT6575 platform offers a 1GHz ARM® CortexTM-A9 processer, a proven 3G/HSPA modem and runs the latest "Ice-Cream Sandwich" Android 4.0 release.
"We expect significant growth in entry and mid-level smartphones, with wholesale prices under US$190, over the coming years. We forecast that this segment will almost triple in size from 191 million shipments in 2012 to 551 million by 2016. At that time, we also expect approximately 75% of those entry and mid-level smartphones to ship to emerging markets" said Neil Mawston, Executive Director, Global Wireless Practice, at Strategy Analytics. The MediaTek MT6575 platform is ideally suited to cater to a wide range of smartphone devices that target this growing segment in multiple markets around the world.
"Leveraging the energy-efficient, high-performance Cortex-A9 processor in Android smartphone applications is an extremely compelling proposition and a great proof point for the scalability of the ARM architecture. During 2011 the Cortex-A9 processor has powered many of the most up-to-date and highest performance smartphones. The proliferation of Cortex-A Series processors into lower cost, mainstream mobile devices will deliver a significant uplift in the user experience," said Laurence Bryant, Director of Mobile, ARM.
For mid-range smartphones, the MT6575 platform supports 720p high-definition video playback and recording with an 8MP camera and qHD (960—540) high-resolution displays via a PowerVRTM SGX Series5 GPU (graphics processing unit) from Imagination Technologies. In industry-standard benchmark testing, the MT6575 offered over 35% improvement for browser applications and over 20% improvement in graphics capabilities for gaming when compared to competitors' best offerings in these segments.
Additionally, the MT6575 platform provides built-in support for advanced features such as integrated capabilities to drive 3D displays and proprietary algorithms for mobile display picture processing. In sum, the MT6575 provides DTV-grade picture quality on a smartphone by leveraging MediaTek's proven technology as a world-leading DTV platform provider.
The MT6575 platform also supports entry-level smartphones with smaller display sizes, lower resolution, less memory and reduced multimedia requirements. In addition, the MT6575 boasts the world's lowest power consumption and most comprehensive integration of hot swap dual-SIM capability compatible with the Android platform. With the MT6575 dual-SIM solution, consumers will no longer have to worry about dropped calls while active data transfer is happening on either SIM card, and will experience automatic resumption of data exchange once calls on the other SIM card have ended, in addition, with the hot swap feature enabled, the SIM card can be inserted without switching off the mobile.
The 3G/HSPA modem integrated in the MT6575 platform has been qualified at major 3G operators world-wide.
The MT6575, delivered in 40nm CMOS technology, builds on the proven track record of the 2nd generation MT6573 platform - i.e., the platform that powers the Lenovo A60, China Unicom's top selling handset in the sub-RMB 1000 (approx. $160 USD) smartphone category.
"We are very excited by the prospects of the MT6575 platform. It combines MediaTek's innovative chipset technology with our proven reference design and complete software solution model. We believe this platform is ideally suited to enable our customers to address mid and entry-level smartphone cost and performance needs on a global basis - today and tomorrow," said Ching-Jiang Hsieh, President of MediaTek.
The MT6575 is currently being incorporated into the latest smartphone offerings by many of MediaTek's leading customers and the first smartphone models based on this new platform will hit the market in the first quarter of 2012.
About MediaTek Inc.
MediaTek Inc. is a leading fabless semiconductor company for wireless communications and digital multimedia solutions. The company is a market leader and pioneer in cutting-edge SOC system solutions for wireless communications, high-definition TV, optical storage, and DVD and Blu-ray products. Founded in 1997 and listed on Taiwan Stock Exchange under the code "2454â€³, MediaTek is headquartered in Taiwan and has sales or research subsidiaries in Mainland China, Singapore, India, U.S., Japan, Korea, Denmark, England and Dubai. For more information, please visit MediaTek's website at www.mediatek.com.