This week at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, I had the chance to sit down with Jeffrey Ju who is the Senior Vice President and head of MediaTek's wireless product business group, as well as Kevin Jou who is their Chief Technology Officer and talk to them about a few things and MediaTek. One of the main things is the fact that MediaTek will be making a pretty large push into the US later this year.
As most of you probably know, MediaTek hasn't been all that popular here in the US, it's mostly been Qualcomm or Samsung's Exynos (even NVIDIA can't get their chips in devices sold in the US). However we have seen MediaTek make it's way into a few smartphones here in the US, and many you probably have never heard of. Because they are low-end and mid-range smartphones, and even some of the manufacturers are fairly new and unknown.
Jeffrey and Kevin shared with us that they have technical certification for T-Mobile's 4G LTE network, and working on certification for AT&T. We should see smartphones with MediaTek chips on T-Mobile's network later this year, and AT&T in the following year. Which is a pretty big deal. We've heard a lot of people say that MediaTek's chips are sluggish, but on paper their chips are right on par with the competition, i.e. Qualcomm. We'll have to see how their high-end chipsets stack up to the Snapdragon 810 in the coming months.
MediaTek also shared some news on one of their newer chipsets (it wasn't announced at MWC though) has support for every band in the world. This means that you'd be able to fly from the US to China and use that same smartphone on carriers in both countries. Instead of having to switch phones, due to the change in technology. This is something that only Qualcomm had previously – as shown in the Nexus 6 – and now MediaTek has something similar. It's a pretty big deal because it means smartphone makers can make one SKU for the entire world. It's even better for customers, as you'll be able to use your phone in other countries without any issues.