LONDON – Intel Corp. has provided details of its Medfield 32-nm platform for smartphones claiming that the main SoC consumes less than 800-mW worst case. It has also announced that it has deals in place with Lenovo and Motorola for products based on Medfield to appear in 2012.
Lenovo is scheduled to introduce the K800 smartphone based on Medfield for the Chinese market in the first half of 2012, Intel said. The second partnership – with Motorola Mobility Inc. – is due to bear fruit in the second-half of 2012 but the Intel executives declined to say whether that would be for smartphones only, or would also include tablet computers.
However, it would appear that Intel is aiming Medfield at gaining design wins in smartphones and first and foremost. It is for the smartphone that Intel has produced a reference design.
The Medfield platform is based on a 32-nm CMOS SoC called Penwell – part numbered Atom Z2460 – which has as its CPU the single-core Saltwell implementation of the Atom processor architecture. However, the Penwell SoC comes with a number of other chips around it to complete the system functionality. It appears that a number of other companies have chips in the Medfield platform including Texas Instruments.
As expected, Intel has announced that the top clock frequency for Medfield is specified at 1.6-GHz with the highest "burst-mode" power consumption described by Intel briefing documents as being about 750-mW and less than 800-mW. This is considerably lower than some industry observers had predicted.
However, this power consumption is for the Penwell SoC on its own. Intel did not discuss the power consumption of the full Medfield chipset including modem and power management ICs with up to 1–Gbyte of DDR2 format DRAM.
Click on image to enlarge.
Medfield platform overiew with Penwell SoC shown in blue. Source: Intel
800 milliW peak at 1.6 GHz ain't bad.
I'm guessing Moto would be more likely to experiment with an Atom tablet than smartphone, but we'll see. They are a good reference account to get.
One would think with all its long term Taiwan connections, HTC would be a shoe in. But then again I am not sure it strays far from Qualcomm in the apps processor.
Nice typos in the platform overview ('cryto' instead of 'crypto' and a dollar sign for cache - obviously an artist that mistook 'cash' for 'cache')
Given that there's already a x86 build of Android, it shouldn't be too hard to put a phone together, although it looks like a nice device for all sorts of embedded stuff...
Cryto clearly is a typographic error. But I think use of the dollar sign is now a "standard" way of indicating cache memory.
I have seen I$ and D$ used for instruction cache and data cache on many diagrams over many years.
If you'll excuse me for being pedantic, repeating the same error over and over doesn't make it right :-)
Even if 'cash' and 'cache' are homophones where you come from, their etymology is completely different.
Some engineer in the past took the trouble to pick _exactly_ the right word for the job. That engineer may even have worked at Intel...
Well to have an idea how well Medfield would do in the market there needs to be some meaningful benchmarking.
According to reports, a tablet based on Medfield should do well at something called CaffeineMark, and outperform Tegra 2, Snapdragon MSM8260 and Samsung Exynos.
When it comes to stock values, the objective truth does not matter while perception is everything. So what is your perception of whether Intel's CES showing will hurt Qualcomm and others?