Joint venture between Ericsson and STMicroelectronics
Manufacturing partners Ericsson and STMicroelectronics will be shuttering ST-Ericsson, its poorly-performing mobile chip joint venture, and will divide parts of the business between the two companies. The venture had been suffering from a large drop in orders from its largest customer, Nokia, as market share of the companies handsets plummeted against competition from Apple and Samsung. ST-Ericsson had not turned a profit since it was formed in 2008, despite one in four smartphones sold in 2011 having some form of its technology integrated.
ST-Ericsson jettisons much of its processor work
ST-Ericsson on Monday backed out of core app processors in an attempt to streamline its work. Research and development, and the matching staff, would be transferred to STMicro. In turn, STMicro would license back the technology it develops so that ST-Ericsson could implement it in modem-equipped processors for smartphones and tablets.
HTC said to be developing chips with ST-Ericsson
HTC is reported to be partnering with ST-Ericsson in order to co-design mobile chips for its low-end devices. The China Times says that HTC and ST-Ericsson have signed a ‘memorandum of cooperation’ and that the first chips should start to ship in 2013. If accurate, the development would help to put HTC on a similar footing to Apple and Samsung which design their own mobile chips enabling better product differentiation.
Products competitive with Qualcomm's Snapdragon
ST-Ericsson is expected to unveil its plans to restructure its operations within the next two weeks. Reuters sources now claim that the reorganization of the joint venture between Sweden's Ericsson and France's STMicroelectronics is in line with the company's plans to be acquired by another chipmaker. Potential buyers named include AMD, NVIDIA, Intel, and Texas Instruments.
We try Sony's smallest 2012 Android phone
Perhaps the most interesting of Sony's new smartphone line unveiled tonight was the Xperia U, which we got to try at the event. It's aiming to be the ever-elusive youth phone and has a unique light-up transparent area as well as an unusually powerful dual-core, 1GHz NovaThor chip inside. Read our hands-on to see whether it will give other Android makers, and Apple, a reason for pause.
Sony Xperia P tested at MWC 2012
Sony's live event Sunday saw it introduce two new phones to hit the mid-range of its lineup, headlined by the Xperia U. With a four-inch display using a new ultra-bright WhiteMagic tech, a dual-core 1GHz NovaThor processor, and an eight-megapixel camera that purportedly has a second from sleeping to a shot, it's supposed to raise the bar for mid-range phones. But does it? Read ahead for our hands-on.
Sony Ericsson Pepper may be Xperia neo V sequel
One of Sony Ericsson's rarely mentioned other 2012 smartphones was leaked in earnest on Saturday with photos and detailse. The MT27i, or Pepper, is expected by XperiaBlog to be a direct sequel to the Xperia neo V with a much more squared-off look that's consistent with the Nozomi and likely other models. Performance may be the biggest leap, as it should jump from its single-core chip to a dual-core 1GHz chip, most likely the ST-Ericsson NovaThor U8500.
Sony Ericsson Nypon to get Android 4, SE CPU
Word of an upcoming handset from Sony Ericsson running on Android 4.0 was shared on Wednesday by Recombu. Dubbed the Nypon, it also goes by the LT22i model number. The silent videos below also show Sony Ericsson making a rare break from Qualcomm's Snapdragon processor and instead use ST-Ericsson's dual-core, 1GHz NovaThor U8500.
Nokia will use dual-core ST-Ericsson chips
Nokia and ST-Ericsson on Wednesday revealed that future Windows Phone handsets from the former will be powered by dual-core NovaThor chips in the future. The move breaks Microsoft's previous insistence that Windows Phones use Qualcomm Snapdragon chips. Many of them are nearly all-in-one chips that include all but the cellular link inside and may be clues to extra features, such as possible HDMI video out.
ARM Cortex-A7 promises speed in sub-100 phones
ARM chose Wednesday to reveal a new mobile processor design that could make possible smartphones under $100 that still have real performance. Cortex-A7 MPCore borrows some of the optimizations from the A15 and rolls them into a budget design. Although it's a fifth the size of the older Cortex-A8 at 0.5mm square and five times more power efficient, speed is "significantly greater" and closer to that of a higher-end $500 phone, ARM argued.
VP says its chip 'optimized' for Windows Phone
Online news source The Inquirer is reporting that Qualcomm does not have an arrangement to be the sole chip provider for the next generation of Windows 7 phones. Qualcomm made the claim earlier this year, contradicting a statement from ST-Ericsson made days earlier. Now Qualcomm's VP of Product Management Raj Talluri is admitting that "there is no written exclusive," according to the report. Snapdragon is the reference chip for use in Microsoft's WP7 devices.
Imagination PowerVR 6 gets six licenses
Imagination Technologies hinted strongly at the roadmap for Apple and other mobile device makers late Tuesday with word that it had handed out the first licenses for PowerVR 6 series graphics. It confirmed that ST-Ericsson's future Nova chips, as well as later TI OMAP processors and unnamed hardware from MediaTek, would use the new technology. Three others were also onboard but were being kept secret, alluding to Apple as one of the clients.
Windows Phone Mango to use only 2nd gen Snapdragon
Qualcomm used the occasion of the Windows Phone Mango (7.1) update event to confirm that it would be the only processor supplier for the next wave of devices using Microsoft's OS. All seven of the named companies will be using a variant of the second-generation Snapdragon. Which clock speeds weren't mentioned, although Microsoft promised that phones would get cheaper with Mango and left the door open to 800MHz Snapdragons and possibly the dual-core 1.2GHz chip found in phones like the Evo 3D.
Nokia in talks with many chipmakers for WP phones
The first Nokia phones running on Windows Phone software after a February deal with Microsoft will use Qualcomm processors, according to a Friday report. But the Finnish phone maker is in talks with other chipset manufacturers for future Windows Phone handsets. Microsoft will work with other chipmakers at the same time, with one strong candidate being ST-Ericsson, claiming today it will supply Nokia's handsets.
ST-Ericsson claims Nokia WP7 will use
The chief of STMicroelectronics Carlo Bozotti says that some Windows Phones in the near future will be incorporating its chips. Among its clientele is Nokia, which he claims will be using its chips in some of its shipping Windows Phones when they go on sale as anticipated early next year. The development is significant as, to date, Microsoft has insisted that for consistency of user experience, that any Windows 7 phone must use a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor among other tight guidelines.
LTE roadmap makes iPhone with LTE possible in 2012
A chipset that would give the iPhone and other mid-size phones LTE-based 4G should arrive in 2012, president of wireless market analyst group Forward Concepts Will Strauss said in a brief interview Friday. Both Apple's new partner Qualcomm, Infineon (Intel), ST-Ericsson, and other companies should have chips that merge both 3G and 4G into a single part next year. The unification would be necessary not just for size, CNET was told, but to make sure they could gracefully drop to 3G or lower during the period when 4G wasn't ubiquitous.
Imagination slips out first PowerVR SGX600 details
Imagination Technologies in a low-profile step has given out the very first details of its next-generation PowerVR mobile graphics. The 6 series, nicknamed Rogue, is expected to be an exponential speed boost; it should be at least 20 and as much as 100 times faster than the SGX500 series graphics it would replace, the chip designer said. Simultaneously, it won't use any more than one milliwatt of power, keeping it suitable for smartphones and tablets.
ARM Cortex-A15 brings 2.5GHz multi-core to phones
ARM today gave a name and details to its future Eagle mobile architecture. The Cortex-A15 can scale up to 1.5GHz in a dual-core format and can even work in quad-core versions up to 2.5GHz, although this is more likely to reach larger or server-like devices. It's built for future 32 nanometer manufacturing and should shrink down to a smaller and more efficient 28nm over time.
Linaro to make Linux tablets, handhelds sooner
Key electronics producers today formed a new coalition to boost the creation of Linux-based devices. Linaro's partners ARM, Freescale, IBM, Samsung, ST-Ericsson and Texas Instruments are all providing software and tools to help bring out open-source tablets, and other devices, easier and sooner. The help won't be limited to pure Linux and will include Android, MeeGo, webOS and other variants that are mostly open.
Promise higher performance, longer battery life
Chipmakers ST-Ericsson and ARM announced that they have teamed to optimize the Android mobile OS for the ST-Ericsson U8500 platform, which uses ARM's Cortex-A9 dual core processor. According to the partnership optimization will provide peak application performance, and either 120 hours of audio playback or 12 hours of full HD video playback, on one battery charge. The partnership plans to release their code enhancements to the Android Open Source community.
Nokia now a member of Wireless Power Consortium
The Wireless Power Consortium on Thursday announced that cellphone maker Nokia has become one of its members. This is expected to result in quicker development and the more widespread use of the Qi wireless charging standard the Consortium is working on. With the addition of Nokia, the company has backed the open standards that would be shared among many makers of cell phones and other portable electronics devices.