I filmed and posted 75 videos from this years Mobile World Congress, I hope you enjoy watching some of those! Here are the highlights, the best topics of this show, making this possibly the most awesome trade show ever for ARM devices!
1. The Cheap Android Smartphone revolution
- Yuhua Teltech sub-$200 4.3" Touchstone
- ZTE Sub-$200 4.3" Skate, ZTE showed all the way down to $99 for 3.5" ZTE Blade
- Huawei showed Sub-$150 Android
- Samsung showed sub-$200 phones such as the Sub-$200 3.5" HVGA Galaxy Ace, Sub-$175 3.31" QVGA Galaxy Fit and Sub-$150 3.14" QVGA Galaxy Mini.
- MediaTek powers Sub-$80 Android Smartphones, that price is boxed in store! (excluding reseller margins): For example the Sub-$80 3.2" QVGA 2G AnyData ASP320-Q
- ST-Ericsson showed their ARM Cortex-A9 Single Core U4500 platform to power Sub-$100 Smartphones within a year from now! The goal is Nexus One performance, longer battery runtime for Sub-$100 within a year from now!
- ST-Ericsson showed their current Sub-$100 U6715 ARM9 468Mhz range of phones, such as K-Touch W606, Acer beTouch E130, Coolpad W711 and the GHT Maestro, these are selling downwards $100 unsubsidized right now on the worldwide market.
- Alcatel One Touch
These are some of the cheap unsubsidized prices (boxed in store, no contracts needed, excluding reseller margins) for the cheapest Android Smartphone ARM SoC platforms that were shown last week at this Mobile World Congress:
- MediaTek at less than $100
- Infomax Communication at $80-90
- Leadcore Technology at $80-105
- Fuzhou Rockchip Electronics at $90-105 (I filmed Rockchip at CES)
- Qualcomm MSM7227 ARM11 ships in the largest amount of cheap 3G Android phones that are about to sell for as low as $100-120
- Broadcom is planning such solutions also to be priced at $100-120
The Cheap Android Smartphone revolution is a HUGE deal, it means a Billion more people might afford to get Internet access and mobile personal Internet features in the next couple of years or so. And this means a potential HUGE disruption of the carrier/manufacturer Smartphone industry, as more and more European and US consumers are going to choose Sub-$100 Android phones without the need for 2-year contracts anymore, those phones can be used on pre-paid and even using unlimited free VOIP over 3G or LTE data-only services pretty soon.
2. Honeycomb, the first real Tablet OS
- Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1
- Motorola Xoom (Xoom at CES)
- LG Optimus Pad
- Malata's upgraded Tegra2 tablets (designs used by ViewSonic, Interpad, Hannspree etc..)
- My Interview with Honeycomb Chief Designer Matias Duarte: He confirms Honeycomb has no minimum hardware requirements, this means, ALL ANDROID TABLETS, even ARM Cortex-A8, even all existing Archos, Samsung, Dell tablets, even 256MB RAM, even the cheaper Rockchip 2808 and 2818, even Telechips, all may be getting Honeycomb firmware upgrades. It's certainly an important detail to find out how much Google engineers are planning to be involved reaching out to each of these lower cost ARM SoC platform providers in porting the Honeycomb to all these cheaper and already released Android tablets platforms once the Tegra2 devices are out, the source code and the UPGRADED CDD (Android 3.0 Compatibility Definition Document) is instantly released. Honeycomb Holographic UI elements might be disabled on cheaper hardware that have less processor, memory and graphics acceleration. This should happen and get fully explained by Google Engineers within a few days! Honeycomb is not only for $800 tablets.
Froyo for current Android tablets is just as good as iOS on iPad. Since Donut SDK are Android apps supporting medium density screens (= tablets). Honeycomb is simply the first time a high-end ARM Powered tablet OS has really been designed and optimized for tablet use. Playbook and WebOS may look nice and similar, but they have no ecosystem (nobody can compete with open and free), I expect HP and RIM will be forced to simply use and build on Android within months.
3. New ARM Cortex-A9 processors shown for the first time
- Texas Instruments OMAP4430 in LG Optimus 3D, 3D Parallax Barrier is actually awesome for video games! Look for Nintendo 3DS turning this into a big deal in the coming weeks and months
- OMAP4430 in the Blackberry Playbook, watch my video interview with RIM about Android Dalvik Engine support on the Blackberry Playbook
- Samsung Exynos with Mali-400 in Samsung Galaxy S2, it may get all the Atrix 4G features through the Mobile High-Definition Link connector, watch my interview on that
- Qualcomm MSM8660 in HP Touch Pad, watch my video showing 1080p 3D capture and playback on MSM8660
- ST-Ericsson launches A9500 ARM Cortex-A9 Dual-core with Mali-400 development board for $200
- ST-Ericsson launches U4500 ARM Cortex-A9 Single-core with Mali-400 for Sub-$100 Android Super Phones
4. First talk on Quad-core, Cortex-A15, next gen processors, arriving fast!
- Texas Instruments OMAP Product Manager Brian Carlson talks OMAP5
- Qualcomm announced Quad-core 2.5Ghz,
- Freescale talks i.MX6 Dual-core and Quad-core
- Nvidia talks Quad-core, in products in August
- ST-Ericsson talks ARM Cortex-A15 and NovaThor
- Broadcom announced ARM Cortex-A15 project
5. HSPA+ and LTE platforms launched
- ST-Ericsson launched Thor HSPA+ and Thor LTE platforms
- Verizon showcased LTE, many of the new phones about to support this.
- Novatel Wireless launched LTE Mifi