Here's my latest walk through the Rockchip booth featuring Chen Feng Vice President at Rockchip, walking through all the latest developments at Rockchip. Including their equation for performance per dollar per power consumption. Rockchip's Android software optimization strategies, including some talk about some of their Chromium OS and Ubuntu experiments and some little talk about what Rockchip wants to do to support the hackers that want to build on top of their platform. Please join the ARMdevice Unlisted Mailing List https://groups.google.com/forum/?fromgroups=#!topic/armdevices-unlisted to suggest how this description can be improved and to help me write the next batches of titles and descriptions so that I can release more Hong Kong HKTDC trade show videos sooner!
Filmed at the HKTDC Hong Kong Electronics Fair (Spring Edition) 2013
Allwinner Technology has an enormous booth showing off some of the latest implementations of their A31, A31s and A20 chipsets.
The quad-core A31 has been available for four months and already shipped more than 1 million units. The quad-core A31s started shipping at the end of March 2013 and has the same quad-core and GPU but is geared towards smaller displays (with less memory bandwidth.) They have introduced the A20 dual-core chip, at a price point quite close to the single core.
Their booth showed more than a dozen HDMI stick and small set-top box like computers. One of the dongles was running the mobile-oriented A20 SoC, which could be poised to take over that market at low cost. The A20 is a low-cost, dual-core Cortex-A7. The A20 is pin compatible with the A10 and offers integrated support for camera sensors. This is looking like a very capable chip to power a variety of low cost devices.
The Allwinner booth was showing off a very cool gamepad built with the A31, running Android 4.1, a built-in screen with 1280 x 800 resolution, and game controllers on the left and right sides of the screen. It works like a self-contained gamepad but also serves as a game controller that can product the game on a large HDMI display. The controller has front and back facing cameras, 1GB of DDR3 and 16GB of internal storage. There was no English-name known for the device, which was developed by www.ibenx.com, one of Allwinner's many partners.
Wits-Technology was showing a development kit for Allwinner's chips Other partners showed off full-sized and micro projectors built with Allwinner chips. A mobile karaoke amplifier with built-in tablet display was built around Allwinner chips. A novel, Android-based 13.3" clamshell laptop was running the A20; faster A31 based laptops are expected later this month. Shenzhen Next-Huawen Technology Co., a design house, was showing off their tablet with keyboard dock. Allwinner says they are studying ChromeOS and also considering support for Linux based distributions like Ubuntu. The company says they have released software supporting the A31 to the open source community through a British company. Does anyone have a contact for that open source partner?
Here are featured the ainol novo10 hero 10.1" 1280x800 on Actions quad-core, ainol novo7 crystal 7" 1280x800 on Actions quad-core, ainol novo7 venus 7" 1280x800 on Actions quad-core, ainol novo9 spark 9.7" retina on Allwinner A31, ainol novo7 eos 7" 1280x800 on Nufront NS115 with built-in 3G, ainol novo7 rainbow 7" 800x480 Allwinner A13, ainol novo8 dream 8" 1024x768 on Actions quad-core and the ainol novo8 discover 8" 1024x768 on Actions quad-core.
Ainol is shipping a wide range of 7", 8 9" and 10" tablets. They are a leading provider and brand name for tablets. Their staff of 600 operates a factory in Shenzhen with production capacity of 100,000 units per month. They are shipping to Chinese, European and US markets with sales currently concentrated in South Asia markets (Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia, and South Korea.)
Their low-cost model starts out at $50 wholesale. The Novo 7" Venus has a screen resolution of 1280 x 800 and runs an Actions-semi quad-core A9 at a wholesale price of $95. The Novo 10" comes with an Actions quad-core A9 at a wholesale price of $145. Their 9.7" offers a Retina screen, with Allwinner's A31 Boxchip, and a wholesale price of $180. The tablets offer different industrial designs snd are engineered with various processors, but they all reportedly provide HDMI ports. Their models based on the Actions processor running Android 4.2.2 support wireless display technology called Miracast: anything displayed on the tablet's screen can be wirelessly shared with a TV connected to a receiver box.
Freelander Link-Create manufactures about 2000 tablets or/and phones per day in this factory in Shenzhen China. Freelander makes and sells a whole range of Allwinner A31, Exynos 4412, MediaTek MT6577/6589 and other tablets and smartphones. But they were just making some MediaTek and Exynos based tablets the day (week-end) I was there. Check back for more on Freelander at http://ARMdevices.net in the next few days. I'm going to try to visit their factory again also while there are more people working making some of these newer devices.
This is perhaps the best looking MediaTek MT6589 quad-core ARM Cortex-A7 phone that I have seen yet out of China. I don't know where the Vivo brand comes from, but this phone is kind of impressive although it is kind of expensive for a MT6589 phone. It includes DAC audio using on-board Cirus Logic chip which provides quite high quality sound.
You can now buy this Skyworth 50E780U 4K HDTV in China for under $1500. It's for sale right now. $1453 (8999rmb) is just the official suggested retail price, it seems to be sold for as cheap as $1323 (8198rmb) online at taobao (which I think is kind of China's Amazon).
This 4K display is made by Taiwanese Chimei Innolux, it's sold by the Skyworth brand, the number 1 TV brand in China (in front of Samsung in China). The only sad thing about this 4K display is that you are only getting a 50" size, not 55" nor 65", I have been talking about my wish of seeing sub-$2000 4K 55" during 2012/2013, now we've got sub-$1500 4K, but for now it's 50". I'm seriously considering buying one of these for myself, if I can somehow have it safely shipped to myself in Europe with UPS or some other shipping method, do you think that would be a good idea or will I regret not having at least a 55" screen size for my 4K home screen resolution? Maybe if I wait another 2-3 months, sub-$2000 55" 4K screens are going to be broadly available? I am very excited about the possibilities of 4K displays, simply because the demonstrations of 4K at trade shows that I have seen over the past few years have always been the highlights of the shows for me. 4K is way, way more interesting than 3D. I also expect to be able to buy sub-$2000 4K camcorders later this year, maybe Panasonic is working on a GH4 with 4K high bitrate video recording resolution. And I am convinced that YouTube, BitTorrent and other online sources for above 16mbit/s compressed 4K video streaming or downloading can provide for awesome 4K video content online in the months and years to come. So I am not worried about 4K content. I am sure Hollywood already has digitized most of their movies in 4K resolution and it wouldn't be hard for them to release them all in 4K as soon as the home movies industry decides how to release them, I'd say they should just turn on 4K video-on-demand right now. $20/month for unlimited 4K movie streaming/downloading/progressive-downloading, I'd pay for that Hollywood! To save on bandwidth costs, Hollywood should just use BitTorrent for their 4K VOD movie distribution. All 8 megapixel pictures can already provide for great 4K slideshows today. I would consider placing my 4K display on an adjustable arm that easily allows the display to be used for office use, home cinema use and when raised a bit higher it can be a constant amazing 8 megapixel slideshow display in the living room. I wonder though what will be with the 30fps limitation of HDMI 1.4a that is the 4K interface used by these new 4K displays, I wonder if a firmware update can transform those to a possible HDMI 1.5 with at least 60fps or maybe 120fps support and maybe also higher bitrate if needed. I'm also worried about the built-in ARM Cortex-A9 dual-core M-star processor system not being user-replaceable once faster processors get available, because the solution to the limitation of HDMI 1.4a would be to directly stream all the contents from Ethernet or USB, but if the built-in processor needs update for the user interfaces, the 4K Google TV UI that I am expecting and perhaps especially the video decode performance being upgraded in the future. There, I'd prefer if the ARM SoC platform was easily user replaceable in all new 4K TVs, that I think would make the 4K panels more future proof regardless what happens with the eventual limitations of HDMI. What do you think is the future-proof 4K solution to the current 30fps@4K limitation of current HDMI 1.4a?
Welcome on this 23-minute tour at the Alldocube RK3188 Tablet assembly line. See how Shenzhen Cube assembles about 2-3 million Android Rockchip tablets a year, expecting to double their output each year.