Tegra 2 powered LG Star Android smartphone video hands-on and iPhone 4 comparison

Are we finally going to see Tegra powered smartphone hitting retail stores after all these years of hype? Well it’s starting to like nVidia may finally have something real to talk about now. GSM-Isreal managed to get some hands-on action with the recently leaked LG Star which is supposedly powered by dual-core Tegra 2 chipset that allows it to capture and playback 1080P videos. As you will see in the video after the break the device features an HDMI connector to plug it in your HDTV. There’s also a short browser comparison against the iPhone 4 but nothing really exciting comes out of it. Unfortunately (because Android browser and UI isn’t GPU accelerated) the scrolling isn’t smooth like on the iPhone 4 or Windows Phone 7 (as seen in my Android vs WP7 browser comparison video). The LG Star also seems to natively support DviX video decoding.

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LG Star Android smatphone with Tegra 2 chipset in the wild

The Tegra 2 powered Android device that LG talked about a few months ago is now in the wild and is named the LG Star. That thing supposedly has a 4inch screen (and a gigantic bezel..), 8Mpix camera with LED flash capable of shooting 1080P videos, micro-sd slot, it’s running a version onf Android and has a 1500Mha battery. I’m not realy sure that the Tegra 2  is the best solution for a smartphone but it will definitely be interesting to see how it stacks up against the competition from Qualcomm, TI and Samsung. More pictures after the break:

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LG Officially Announces Tegra 2 powered Optimus line of Smartphones


LG is definitely going all out at the IFA tradeshow in Berlin this year. After showcasing a couple of new HDTV’s, OLED TV,Android Tablets and yesterday’s DLNA on Windows Phone 7 feature they are now officially announcing the launch of a couple of Tegra 2 powered Smartphones this fall under the Optimus brand. Keep in mind this probably only applies to Android based devices given that only Qualcomm’s SnapDragon line of chipsets are certified to work on Windows Phone 7 right now (this will change in the future). The Tegra 2 SoC is made of a Dual Core CortexA9 CPU@ 1ghz each, a higher-clocked Tegra 1 GPU and has the ability to encode/decode 1080P videos (H.264/VC-1) without breaking a swea (you can see the block-diagram above) t. Interestingly Samsung’s Hummingbird Chipset still sports the fastest mobile GPU (PowerVR SGX540) but all this power doesn’t mean anything to the end user when it barely used by the OS and aplpications. Unlike Apple’s iOS and Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7, Android’s GUI isn’t GPU accelerated yet and one has to wonder what is exactly the point of having Dual-Core A9 CPU in a smartphone this fall. Things should be more interesting on this front one year from now when the software platform finally catches up and start to benefit from all this power. Full Press Release after the break:

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Microsoft KIN TWO teardown

Chipworks just finished tearing down Microsoft’s KIN TWO handset and posted some interesting pictures and info. Surprisingly they found out that contrary to what was officially announced, the camera is not from OmniVision but from Sony (Sony IMX046 8 Mp Image Sensor). The KIN TWO also features a Qualcomm QSC6085 CDMA Processor alongside the nVidia Tegra APX2600. The Capacitive controller of the touch screen is a T1021A ClearPad Controller from Synaptics.

Source: ChipWorks

nVidia loses major Tegra contract with Samsung, lowers expectations

This shouldn’t come as a surprise especially for those who have been following nVidia for a while. The big green company has always been known to be good on the PR front but severely lacking when it comes to product delivery and real functionalities. According to Semiaccurate, Samsung has decided to drop a major contract it had with Nvidia for Tegra based phones. I’ve been following Tegra news and developement ever since it was announced back in 2008 find it kinda ironic that the only handheld products shipping with a Tegra SoC are the Zune HD and the Samsung M1 PMP (this thing shouldn’t even count given that it was only released in South Korea and nearly didn’t sell at all). Interstingly the first (and probably last) Tegra based phones are only coming out now, the Kin One & Two. Here again there’s nothing exceptional given that those two products are basically Zune HD phones as I reported here they have the exact same Tegra APX2600 and run on the same WinCE Kernel. As Charlie points out in his post, nVidia totally messed the whole thing since the beginning by partnering exclusively with Microsoft. Tegra was supposed to be the preferred SoC for Windows Mobile 7 handsets (launching in Q3/4 2009) and if memory doesn’t fail me, a couple of WM7 Motorola products were supposed to hit the market in Fall 09 and even HTC had a Tegra based phone (SuperStar) in the works back then,same for Samsung (see linkedIn info on WM7/Tegra work). Unfortunately Microsoft decided to scrap WM7 aka Photon in Q2 2008 leaving nVidia only with the Pink Project that was supposed to launch at MWC 09 (it didn’t and MS only unveiled WM6.5.) Because Tegra was only compatible with WinCE, nVidia had to go back and work on Android/linux support if it wanted to have a chance to sell its chip to OEM/ODMs. But it was too late, Motorola decided to goo 100% Android and use TI OMAP and Qualcomm MSM SoCs,  HTC didn’t see any reason to continue developing a Tegra device given the availability of the more advanced Cortex A8 based Snapdragon SoC  etc…And to make matters worst, Microsoft has decided that Qualcomm’s SnapDragon will be the only supported chipset in Windows Phone 7 in the near future. That leaves nVidia with the KIN phones which are basically the result of the initial partnership with Microsoft 2 years ago. So don’t expect to see any Tegra smartphones in the market soon (and Tegra 2 is currently aimed at the smartbook/netbook market now).

Via: Semiaccurate

Mobile World Congress Live coverage starting February 14th!

Time to let the cat out of the bag: I’ll be covering this year’s MWC in Barcelona from February 14th until February 17th!

You can expect a whole lot of pictures and videos of all the latest Windows Mobile, Android & Symbian/Maemo hardware that will be announced during the event. The highlight of the show will obviously be Microsoft‘s press conference on Feb 15th which will be streamed live by Microsoft on their press website (but I will also comment it live on Twitter and update the site as soon as possible with live pictures and videos). I will also cover several other press conference/events: Sony Ericsson, Nokia, LG, Texas Instrument, HTC etc.. and have a couple of interviews scheduled with folks from Microsoft, nVidia & others…

To have the most up-to-date info please suscribe to MobileTechWorld’s Twitter feed here. I’ll post more info in the coming days.

nVidia Tegra 2 chipset announced


As it was expected nVidia just announced their Tegra 2 chipset based on a Dual Cortex9 ARM core (Android, Windows CE, Windows Mobile and Chrome OS compatible). This is a giant leap from ARM11 Tegra 1.

Highlights / Key Facts:

  • Tegra is the power behind the new generation of tablets, offering:
    • 3D touchscreen user interfaces
    • Amazing battery life— always-on and always-connected
    • Adobe Flash Player 10.1 acceleration for streaming video and 3D mobile games
    • Resolution ranging from four-to-eight times that of smartphones
    • Form factors and screen sizes ranging from 5-15 inches
    • Immersive gaming, vivid photos and video, and crystal-clear audio
  • Next Generation Tegra is a leap in mobile computing performance with:
    • The world’s first dual-core ARM Cortex A9 CPU running up to 1GHz
    • Eight independent processors to handle web browsing, HD video encode and decode and mobile 3D gaming
    • 10x faster than the processors used in smartphones today, and up to 4x the performance of the previous generation Tegra processor
    • Advanced TSMC 40nm process with active power management

As it is usually the case with nVidia, the product looks awesome but unfortunately don’t expect any Tegra 2 smartphones in the near future. nVidia sure knows how to hype their products though. The original Tegra chipset was announced 2 years ago and we still haven’t seen it in a commercially available smartphone. The only shipping devices sporting a Tegra 1 are the Zune HD and Samsung M1. nVidia’s problem has always been arrogance (and shady PR/Marketing stunts) and I’m not the least surprised to see that not a single smartphone has shipped with a Tegra chipset inside (yet). The biggest disadvantage compared to Qualcomm’s Snapdragon is, IMO, the lack of cellular modem & aGPS receiver in the SOC. Anyway, head over here for an in-depth analysis of Tegra 2, but beware, Anand’s article sounds a lot like an nVidia ad…

The first product packing a Tegra 2 is the Boxee Box from D-link

Source: nVidia

Samsung is working on an nVidia Tegra smartphone

LaptopMag got word from a Samsung representavie that the South Korean company is currently working with nVidia on an upcoming Tegra based phone. Not much is said besides this. Will it be Windows Moble or Android based ? Your guess..