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Heart of dragon beats inside smartest devices: Qualcomm

May 18, 2011

Dr. Sandeep Sibal, country manager and VP - Business Development, Qualcomm India & South Asia.

Dr. Sandeep Sibal, country manager and VP - Business Development, Qualcomm India & South Asia.

Mobile has emerged as the biggest platform in the history of mankind. Today, the Qualcomm Snapdragon platform is much more than a phone, according to Dr. Sandeep Sibal, country manager and VP – Business Development, Qualcomm India & South Asia.

For instance, there are 40 million mobile Internet users in India. There is a strong demand for data from tier 2 and 3 cities. There are said to be 28 million Facebook users, of which, 30 percent are mobile. About 20 photos uploaded every second, and mobile users are 2x times more active.

Qualcomm boasts of an unparallelled system integration, as having the best-in-class assets is now a key advantage. The benefits of integration include lower system costs, less engineering and faster time to market — over 745 devices launched in fiscal 2010, smaller footprint — about 10-20 percent smaller, and power efficiency — up to 35 percent better.

As for the roadmap breadth and execution, already, over a 100+ commercial devices have been announced that use Snapdragon. There are said to be 200+ more in design, and 30 companies with tablet designs are deemed underway. Snapdragon currently powers eight tablet models.

Snapdragon processors — what’s coming!
Snapdragon QSD 8×50 is the world’s first mobile processor at 1GHz. It features the Scorpion Core, Adreno 200 GPU, 3G connectivity and 720p HD video capture and playback. Snapdragon MSM 8×55 is said to be the world’s first mobile single core at 1.4GHz. It features a single Scorpion CPU 1.4GHz, Adreno 205 GPU, 1024×768/720p/Dolby 5.1, stereoscopic 3D capture and playback, app proc only available, and supports a comprehensive range of 3G.

The Snapdragon asynchronous dual and quad core family consists of the Snapdragon MSM 8×60. It features dual Scorpion CPU of 1.5GHz each, asynchronous cores, Adreno 220 GPU, HD 1080p capture and playback, Dolby 5.1, stereoscopic 3D capture and playback, and a comprehensive range of 3G.

The Snapdragon next gen ‘Krait’ processor, which should be out in the last quarter of 2011, features next gen Krait architecture. Other features include single/dual/quad Krait CPU up to 2.5GHz, Adreno dual/quad GPU, full 1080p display support, stereoscopic 3D capture and playback, and an unparalleled range of 3G/4G. Qualcomm claims that the Snapdragon has superior CPU micro-architecture. In contrast, competitors “push” to achieve performance.

The Adreno GPU provides superior graphics performance. There is smooth, responsive, customized UI on multiple operating systems. There are hours of game play between charges due to superior mobile GPU architecture. As of now, Qualcomm is offering over 100+ games on Snapdragon – said to be way more than any other platform. Internet video is also said to run better using Snapdragon. Qualcomm is the first to provide hardware acceleration for Flash and HTML5 videos. It is also the first to provide in-page playback of HTML5 videos as well as stutter free flash video playback.

Qualcomm also has OS platform leadership. Over 60 percent of Android devices are powered by Qualcomm. All Windows Phone devices launched are said to be powered by Snapdragon, as are all new webOS devices.

Modem evolution and technology leadership
In HSPA+, Qualcomm has had 103 launches, 148 network committments, and 13 multi-carriers. As of Aug. 2010, it has been offering DC-HSPA+ 42Mbps. In Rev A and B, it has 107 commercial networks with 33 percent growth year-on-year. There are seven KDDI Rev B devices. Qualcomm moved to EV-DO Rev B in Jan. 2010.

In LTE, Qualcomm is said to have had 20 launches and has 208 network committments, besides, 14 LTE TDD trials. 4G LTE has been around since Nov. 2010.  Snapdragon advantages include:
* Purpose built CPU;
* Asynschronous dual core architecture;
* Best-in-class power consumption;
* Unmatched system integration;
* Widest OS platform support;
* Integrated LTE; and
* Super scale.

In India, Qualcomm Snapdragon has had sufficient traction, with six models launched during 2010 — Acer Liquid (Feb. 2010), Sony Ericsson XperiaX10 (Mar. 2010). HTC Desire (Aug. 2010), Acer Liquid Ferrari Edition (Sept. 2010), Dell Streak (Oct. 2010) and HTC HD7 (Dec. 2010) .

In 2011, as of May, it has 13 models launched — HTC Mozart (Jan. 2011), HTC Desire HD (Jan. 2011), HTC Desire Z (Jan. 2011), Dell Venue (Feb. 2011), Dell Venue Pro (Feb. 2011), OliveSmartV-S300 (Feb. 2011), Acer Liquid Metal (Feb. 2011), HTC Incredible S (Mar. 2011), Sony Ericsson Xperia PLAY (Apr. 2011), Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc (Apr. 2011), HTC Desire S (Apr. 2011), Acer Iconia Smart (May 2011) and Spice MI 410 (May 2011). In all, 20 Snapdragon devices have been launched till date.

Snapdragon in India in 2012 will likely be in high-end smartphones as well as tablets. These would co-incide with the launch of 4G/LTE networks. The apps would include Augmented Reality, Movies on the go (Netflix), console quality gaming and stereoscopic 3D.

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