LONDON Qualcomm has delayed a promised dual-core Snapdragon processor for smart books from 2009 until the second-half of 2010, according to a company executive.
The dual-core Snapdragon QSD8672 is based on two Scorpion cores, which themselves are based on the ARM Cortex-A8 but modified by Qualcomm under an architectural license. The device was scheduled to be the first of a third generation of processors in Qualcomm's Snapdragon family.
The company originally announced plans for the QSD8672 in November 2008, saying the chip would be built on a 45-nm manufacturing process, capable of a 1.5-GHz clock frequency and would sample in the second-half of 2009.
It turns out that didn't happen, so the MSM8260 and MSM8660, announced
earlier this month and also delayed, from 4Q09, were the first dual-core Snapdragons to emerge from Qualcomm. The MSM devices, also implemented on 45-nm have are said to operate at a clock frequency of up to 1.2-GHz.
The MSM prefix indicates that these chips are aimed at the smartphone market, whereas the QSD prefix indicates chips intended for smart books, said Mark Frankel, vice president of product management at the computer and consumer product group of the QCT division within Qualcomm. "That doesn't mean a QSD chip will never appear in a mobile phone or vice versa," said Frankel.
Frankel explained that during the course of the design of the QSD8672 Qualcomm had changed its priorities. "As the chips were planned and in development we could see that the computer market for ARM was in a nascent state. We did some prioritizing and rescheduling internally. We also decided to make them highly software compatible. As a result the MSM dual-cores are sampling prior to the QSD."
Frankel said that the QSD8672 would sample later this year. "There is a date. Our customers know what it is," Frankel said.
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