Menu
Smartphones under $US100 with Intel chip could ship next year

Smartphones under $US100 with Intel chip could ship next year

Intel plans to put its low-cost Sofia chip with integrated 3G in smartphones that could can "clearly go below $100"

Intel will ship its low-cost Sofia mobile chip to device makers by the end of this year, so smartphones and tablets priced less than $US100 could be on the market early next year.

The timeline came from Hermann Eul, vice president and general manager of Intel's Mobile and Communications Group, in an interview at the Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco.

The Sofia chip will have an x86 CPU and an integrated 3G modem. Higher-priced mobile devices with a variant of Sofia containing an integrated LTE modem will also be available next year. Intel will start shipping the LTE-based Sofia to device makers in the first half of next year.

"LTE is a little higher price segment," Eul said.

With Sofia, Intel hopes to reverse years of struggles in the smartphone market dominated by ARM, which provides processor designs used in some of the best-selling handsets. Intel's chips have been used in just a few handsets, but the company hopes Sofia will provide a foothold in the fast-growing, low-cost smartphone market.

Intel hopes to work with at least a dozen smartphone makers by next year, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich said to a group of reporters ahead of the IDF.

Intel has partnered with Chinese chip maker Rockchip to make Sofia variants for low-cost smartphones and tablets. The first dual-core chip from the alliance will ship in the first half of 2015, followed by a quad-core variant. Rockchip already makes low-cost chips based on ARM used in mobile devices under $US100.

But with the world moving to LTE, will there be demand for 3G handsets?

"There are parts of the planet that won't have LTE for quite some time. They probably will choose the more cost-effective solution," Eul said.

The 3G version of Sofia will support TD-SCDMA, and could be used in handsets for the Chinese market.

"On Sofia, they can do tablet, phone, whatever they want," Eul said. "That 3G technology is certified for almost every carrier on the globe."

Agam Shah covers PCs, tablets, servers, chips and semiconductors for IDG News Service. Follow Agam on Twitter at @agamsh. Agam's e-mail address is agam_shah@idg.com


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags smartphonesintelprocessorsIDFconsumer electronicsComponents

Featured

Slideshows

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel

Reseller News honoured the leading female front runners of the New Zealand channel at the 2018 Women in ICT Awards (WIICTA) in Auckland. The awards honoured standout individuals across seven categories, spanning Entrepreneur; Innovation; Rising Star; Shining Star; Community; Technical and Achievement.

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel
Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners

Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners

Microsoft honoured leading partners across the channel following a year of customer innovation and market growth in New Zealand. The 2018 Microsoft Partner Awards recognised excellence within the context of the end-user, spanning a host of emerging and established providers.

Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners
Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch

Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch

Introducing the Reseller News Innovation Awards, launched to the channel at the 2018 Judges’ Lunch in Auckland. With more than 70 judges now part of the voting panel, the new-look awards will reflect the changing dynamics of the channel, recognising excellence across customer value and innovation - spanning start-ups, partners, distributors and vendors.

Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch
Show Comments