Intel got into the giving mood this holiday season and decided to share the company’s take on the future of smartphones and tablets.
Intel demoed a new phone and tablet running on an Intel Medfield chip to the Technology Review. The two devices, running Android Gingerbread and Ice Cream Sandwich, don’t use the standard ARM processors that are found in most phones today.
Intel has been showing off similar powered prototypes for a few years now, though this time around we are closer to an actual product. The Android powered phone and tablet aren’t going to come to store shelves as you see below, rather Intel hopes that hardware manufacturers like HTC, Samsung and others will use these ideas to bring products to the consumer.
The phone you see below won’t be one that you can buy, but Stephen Smith vice president of Intel’s architecture group tells the Technology Review that, “We expect products based on these to be announced in the first half of 2012.”
Intel is betting on a better user experience with the new processor. Instead of upping the cores, Intel is focusing on delivering where many phones fail — battery life. Even with the focus on long life, the prototypes reportedly handle smartphone tasks well. Web browsing was reportedly, “smooth and fast” and the device could play Blu-Ray quality video and stream it wirelessly to a TV. Intel has added circuits to the processor which are designed to speed up these common tasks and Android apps.
There is no image of the tablet, which is described as having a larger screen than the iPad with similar thickness and weight. The tablet runs Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, which offers a much nicer user experience than previous Android tablets.
The new processor is a part of the low power consumption line which you may be familiar with in netbooks, but will use a single chip, known as a system on a chip, instead of multiple chips like you find in notebooks.
Stay tuned for more on Intel’s fight for the smartphone and tablet market. We hope to see some of these reference designs and prototypes at CES 2012, and perhaps actual products in the next six months.