Freescale is showcasing the performance of their Quad Core ARM Cortex-A9 i.MX6 Quad processor.
The OMAP5 ARM Cortex-A15 processor is taped out, they are about to show impressive samples soon, they will then be tweaking and optimizing it before release in commercial products within about a year. OMAP4 is being launched in the Motorola Razr and in the Samsung Galaxy Nexus phones, each more awesome than the other. Ice Cream Sandwich Android 4.0 works awesomely on OMAP4, Honeycomb 3.2 tablets like the Archos 101 G9 are being released now, TI is also looking forward to power products such as Laptops that run Chrome OS, Ubuntu and Windows 8.
This is the first time that Marvell is showing the PXA2128 in a workable tablet prototype form factor. This is the new high-end processor from Marvell with a 1.2Ghz Dual-core doing the intensive tasks and a slower lower power co-processor doing the basic background tasks, providing a solution that can peak at high performance and go back to low power mode automatically.
Mentor Graphics is one of the major EDA providers of the ARM industry. At their booth they are showing some impressive 3D graphical user interfaces that they say is easy and cheap to implement on ARM Powered devices to make them more appealing and to differentiate in the UI design, and they are also showing an auto-balancing lego robot built using Texas Instruments Sitara microcontrollers and the nucleus real-time software.
They are showing Ubuntu 11.10 running on the Toshiba AC100, and Ubuntu 11.10 Server Edition running on the OMAP4 Pandaboard.
Here’s a pretty cool looking augmented reality application, he points the smartphone at a city built with paper, and the phone displays some augmented reality overlay on top.
They are launching before Christmas, it’s a $299/299€ Android watch, running on the Freescale i.MX233 ARM9 processor, it has a 1.54″ capacitive touch screen, with Bluetooth it synchronizes with any Android phone, iPhone or other smartphone, there is an API to adapt Android apps to it.
They plan mass production and deliveries by Christmas this year of the $25 ARM Powered PC. It’s basically a Broadcom ARM11 based SoC on a PCB with USB host, Ethernet, SD Card slot and a HDMI output.
The new awesome Samsung Galaxy Nexus was just unveiled in Hong Kong. It has an amazing 1280×720 4.65″ HD Super AMOLED screen, LTE/HSDPA+ and runs on the new Texas Instruments OMAP4460 1.2Ghz dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor. This is what TI’s Vice President of OMAP platform business unit Remi El-Ouazzane has to say about this:
Today is a great day for our collaboration with Google…The long-awaited Android 4.0 release is finally being revealed with the OMAP4460 processor powering the absolutely gorgeous Samsung Galaxy Nexus device. I am so excited about this launch. What I may be the most excited by is not only the ability to converge to one Android release for both smartphones and tablets, but to be able to pack that level of performance across graphics or video on an HD screen and within the power envelope of a smartphone device…This is where our OMAP smart multicore architecture makes a huge difference. At the end of the day, brute force (number of cores, for instance) does not rival sophistication.
and a further statement from TI:
Today, TI proudly revealed a major OMAP platform milestone: yes, the highly-anticipated Android 4.0 “Ice Cream Sandwich” release runs on the OMAP4460 processor. This advancement is an exceptional demonstration of what OMAP processors uniquely do, and what separates them from competitors in the mobile processing world: the ability to provide hardware-integrated security, distinctive and advanced imaging features, enhanced memory and more, all on a smart multicore architecture.
Here are some of my impressions and expectations for the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and Ice Cream Sandwich:
- This means Samsung can maybe “easily” update processor speed to 1.5Ghz and maybe also later to the OMAP4470 1.8Ghz when those faster OMAP4 processors become available.
- I don’t know how fast Samsung can manufacture these screens and how much it costs them, my guess is this screen is the most expensive Super AMOLED yet, and I guess that Super AMOLED is already quite a bit more expensive than LCD and I wonder if Samsung is able to manufacture enough of these screens to not create major shortages for the availability of this Galaxy Nexus worldwide for the months to come. If there is one phone worth queuing up for if you want to be sure to get one in the first weeks/months at release, this may be it.
- They haven’t yet shown what happens when you connect to HDTV output, I wonder if the “pins” on the side provide HDMI and data output/input or/and if an MHL connector takes care of this like on the Samsung Galaxy S2. I expect the full Motorola Atrix type Laptop Dock, Desktop Dock, Multimedia Dock, all those features are likely part of Android 4.0, which is why I think Ice Cream Sandwich means the merger of Android with Chrome OS and Google TV.
- Samsung Galaxy Nexus is likely going to be expensive. This is not news though for high-end smartphones, those are all ridiculously expensive today. But that’s just how things are, and they are able to sell tens of millions at those expensive prices. Consider that you are paying $2000 to $3000 for this phone with a 2 year contract. Considering the possibility that Samsung may not be able to manufacture enough of those 720p HD Super AMOLED screens, they may even purposefully increase the price even further at launch.
I just checked the latest price on the Archos 80 G9 tablet (the basic 1Ghz 8GB version), and wow, it seems to be just $269 now on Amazon.com
It currently says:
Ships from and sold by CircuitCity.
The Archos 101 G9 1Ghz 8GB is also now for sale on Archos.com for $369 at this URL: http://store.archos.com/10070_101g9_landing.php
Consider that the 1.2Ghz Turbo version with 16GB and 250GB hard drive will also start becoming available later this month. And that the 1.5Ghz version should start being for sale around December normally. The faster Turbo versions having more storage will obviously be a little bit more expensive.
I hope to get my Archos G9 tablet within a few days, and then I’ll post my full video-review. For now you can see my short overview video that I filmed of early pre-release prototypes of these tablets last July: