In the Android world, there are currently only a handful of manufacturers that are able to produce the high speed chipsets required to power the smart beasts of our days. Although you can safely find a whole bunch of companies that produce processors for modern day lower end smartphones, the medium and high end market is dominated by the likes of Nvidia, Qualcomm and Samsung. Each of these three big names is making chipsets that can be found in the latest and most powerful devices out there, but it seems like the market has place for one more big name, Intel. The giant chip manufacturer named Intel has decided to produce a flavor of its Atom chips that can work with the ARM requirements of the Android platform. The best part about this is that the first device should come out tomorrow.
Thanks to an official announcement from Lava, the company Intel has teamed up with in order to produce an actual smartphone has announced that it will release the world’s first Atom powered Android smartphone on the 19th of April. This news was also confirmed by Intel CEO Paul Otellini, although he just pointed that the release date will be somewhere this week. The only downside of this is that the Xolo X900 will only be available in India at launch.
It just so happens that this Atom based processor might be the most powerful one the Android world has seen so far, and with Intel’s background we would be quite surprised if it failed to meet the expectations.
While the major star of the Xolo X900 is the Intel Atom processor, the other specs are also pretty much what you can expect from a high end device. You can expect to see a 4.03 inches wide screen with 1024 x 600 resolution (295 PPI), an 8 MP camera on the back capable of 10fps in burst mode and 1080p video recording, a 1.3 MP front facing camera, 1 GB of RAM, 16 GB of internal storage space, Wi Fi b/g/n, built in HDMI port and NFC capabilities alongside the HSPA+ connectivity.
The star of the show is the Intel Atom Z2460 processor that has a single core 1.6GHz Saltwell CPU equipped with Hyper-Threading. While the competition relies on multi core processors, Intel has decided to test the waters with its well known Hyper-Threading feature. Other features of the chipset include a PowerVR SGX540 GPU clocked at 400 MHz, 12MHz more than the one found on the Galaxy Nexus, and 32-bit Dual channel LPDDR2 memory. The only problem is that the processor is still based around the x86 architecture, so compatibility with current apps may be a slight problem, at least at the release.
On the software side, the device in the picture looks to be running Android 2.3 Gingerbread, but it is highly likely that Intel and Lava will decide to offer the X900 with Android 4.0 ICS onboard.
As far as the price is concerned, we expect the Lava Xolo X900 unlocked version to have a $500 price tag, which is quite ok given the specs of the device.
If you ask us, the only major inconvenient of the Intel equipped smartphones out there, because Lenovo will also be launching an Android device in the near future, is that they will not be available world wide from the start. We hope Intel makes it through the hard first steps in the Android world, as people are more likely to buy Intel powered tech if it on par with the competition in terms of performance.