Motorola Mobility, a subsidiary of Google, will reveal its very first smartphone based on Intel Atom Z2460 system-on-chip and Google Android 4 operating system next month in London, UK. The cellphone will be the first x86-based smartphone that will likely to be sold in the U.S. eventually.
Earlier this year Intel Corp. and Motorola Mobility entered into a multi-year, multi-device strategic relationship that includes smartphones which Motorola will begin shipping later this year using Intel Atom processors and the Android platform. The companies will collaborate across hardware, software and services to deliver complete solutions and disruptive new user experiences that offer long battery life, increased computing performance, advanced imaging and video capabilities, and seamless wireless connections.
Motorola has confirmed to BBC that it would launch its first Intel Atom-based handset on September 18, 2012, at a special event in London, England. The company did not reveal any details about the forthcoming device, but given the fact that it will be based on Intel Atom Z2460 "Medfield" system-on-chip and Android 4 operating system, it will be generally similar to Intel's reference design, but packed with Google-exclusive features.
Earlier this year an image of a Motorola smartphone, which was presumably powered by an Intel chip, was published. The handset was claimed to be set for announcement at Mobile World Congress 2012 in Barcelona, Spain, but it never materialized.
Intel Atom Z2460 "Medfield" is powered by Saltwell micro-architecture 1.60GHz x86 core with Hyper-Threading technology, enhanced Intel Deeper Sleep, C6E estate, S0i1/S0i3 power reduction features and 512KB of cache. The SoC also includes Intel GMA graphics core (OpenGL ES 2.0, OpenGL 2.1, OpenVG 1.1, 400MHz) with hardware accelerated high-definition 1080p video playback, 32-bit LPDDR2 memory controller, Intel's new image signal processor and various improvements to speed up various multimedia or security demands. The Atom Z2460 SoC can dynamically scale its clock-speeds and also supports the new Smart Idle technology (SIT) which enables it to switch off while the operating systems remains in the "on" state (S0); the technique takes full advantage of clock and distributed power gating across power islands and can instantly resume from idle states thanks to L2 cache peculiarities. The new chip is in production now using 32nm process technology.
Intel Atom Z2460 is already used inside smartphones offered by Gigabyte Technology, Lenovo Group, Lava and Orange in different parts of the world. The handset from Motorola will likely be more advanced than the other devices based on the same SoC.
Intel's path to smartphones has been extremely long and thorny. After dumping its ARM-based Xscale product division in 2006, the company has been attempting to crack the markets of smartphones and tablets since 2008.