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Intel Medfield Phones Selling Only in Limited Numbers

By - Source: Digitimes | B 23 comments

Intel is reportedly preparing a more aggressive push for its smartphone processor architecture, as demand apparently has been rather limited at this time and vendors apparently believe that the company isn't able to compete with ARM at this time.

According to Digitimes, Medfield is currently available in the Xolo 900 phone in India, in the San Diego phone that is sold by Orange across Europe, as well as the Lenovo K800 in China. ZTE will add a device for Chinese market in the second half of this year and Motorola is expected to follow suit over the next few months.

Despite Intel's aggressive approach to drive Medfield into the market, there have been only limited shipments of Intel-based high-end and maisntream smartphones, Digitimes said, and phone vendors are not expecting this situation to change anytime soon. They anticipate that 22 nm and 14 nm version of the SoC may do much better than the current 32 nm Medfield product.

While Intel claims that Medfield is much faster than competing ARM products, it will be an uphill battle to gain footing in a market that has been dominated by ARM products, and in a market that is characterized by existing business relations between ARM processor vendors and handset makers. However, it may be rather common sense that Intel has not leveraged its manufacturing superiority enough to pitch Medfield to phone makers. It may, in fact, take two more processor generations until Intel can establish credibility and vendor connections to be able to succeed.

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Top Comments
  • 12 Hide
    rflynn88 , June 22, 2012 1:32 PM
    Intel making SoCs = more competition. Nothing wrong with that.
  • 11 Hide
    Anonymous , June 22, 2012 2:40 PM
    house70, anand had tests of battery life and performance. Performance was great. Only 2 ARM based phones were faster, but those 2 also had no where near Intel's battery life. Performance per minute of battery life was definitely in Intel's favor. I think the BG vs. ICS issue is real. Intel just really needs to get more up to date. Get baseband functionality integrated, get to 22nm, and get a dual core version out. That will get people's attention. A single core CPU with old software on an old process is just not going to get anyone excited, even though the performance is excellent and the battery life is good. I see Intel being a player in mid to late 2013 when they have these features.
Other Comments
  • 6 Hide
    rb420 , June 22, 2012 1:03 PM
    I, for one, welcome our new mobile processor overlords.
  • -7 Hide
    mayankleoboy1 , June 22, 2012 1:22 PM
    ^
    ??
  • 12 Hide
    rflynn88 , June 22, 2012 1:32 PM
    Intel making SoCs = more competition. Nothing wrong with that.
  • 3 Hide
    hoofhearted , June 22, 2012 1:36 PM
    I'd be more interested in hard numbers, specifically, benchmarks.
  • 4 Hide
    annymmo , June 22, 2012 1:55 PM
    The 22nm and 14nm generations will be very interesting.
  • 4 Hide
    house70 , June 22, 2012 2:03 PM
    Hardly anyone ever heard of them. On top of that, the only benchmark available for the San Diego model is not very flattering (against SGS3), but somewhat better than Droid Razr. It needs to be head and shoulders above the competition for people to start paying attention to a new player. There are still no benchmarks available regarding battery life, and the launch with GB instead of ICS pretty much killed it before birth.
    I appreciate Intel's desire to get into the game, but they can do waaaay better than this, given their reputation and their financial power. Not to mention the lack of promotion, even worse than WinPhone.
  • -2 Hide
    spookyman , June 22, 2012 2:38 PM
    Does it run DROID?
  • 11 Hide
    Anonymous , June 22, 2012 2:40 PM
    house70, anand had tests of battery life and performance. Performance was great. Only 2 ARM based phones were faster, but those 2 also had no where near Intel's battery life. Performance per minute of battery life was definitely in Intel's favor. I think the BG vs. ICS issue is real. Intel just really needs to get more up to date. Get baseband functionality integrated, get to 22nm, and get a dual core version out. That will get people's attention. A single core CPU with old software on an old process is just not going to get anyone excited, even though the performance is excellent and the battery life is good. I see Intel being a player in mid to late 2013 when they have these features.
  • -2 Hide
    jayracer7474 , June 22, 2012 3:26 PM
    they cant sell any orange's because they're locked bootloader, cant barely even root them
  • 6 Hide
    Kraszmyl , June 22, 2012 3:57 PM
    anandtech has a pretty good review for them.

    The intel soc even being single core trounces the various dual core arm socs and comes close to the quads. The gpu preformance is alot more varied. Battery was average if i recall correctly.

    The intel soc has an arm converter built in if i recall correctly so you can run most non x86 android apps if the built in andriod translator doesnt take care of it already.

    All in all its a fairly solid offering and i look forward to seeing what comes out of both companies because of it.
  • 0 Hide
    rantoc , June 22, 2012 3:57 PM
    The company's are waiting for windows 8 before this platform takes off, everyone knows this so please spare us the painfully obvious!
  • 0 Hide
    house70 , June 22, 2012 4:21 PM
    HeartyApplehouse70, anand had tests of battery life and performance. Performance was great. Only 2 ARM based phones were faster, but those 2 also had no where near Intel's battery life. Performance per minute of battery life was definitely in Intel's favor. I think the BG vs. ICS issue is real. Intel just really needs to get more up to date. Get baseband functionality integrated, get to 22nm, and get a dual core version out. That will get people's attention. A single core CPU with old software on an old process is just not going to get anyone excited, even though the performance is excellent and the battery life is good. I see Intel being a player in mid to late 2013 when they have these features.

    Will have to look at these benchmarks; still, you seem to agree with a lot of what I said, just put it in different words. Forgot to mention the lack of promotion that is plaguing this platform. If it was promoted more, maybe they would sell more and get a fetter foothold in the market. With an availability on only 3-4 networks in the whole world that's not going to happen. Push the thing across the globe and people will notice it, even if means taking a financial hit - that's why a big company like Intel can afford to do that and they should have taken advantage of it.
  • -5 Hide
    xemone , June 22, 2012 5:02 PM
    No one should be surprised. This is a no-brainer. Note to Intel; in order for any Intel smartphone SoC to compete with the superphone chip maker Qualcomm, the said x86 SoC has to at least match the features in the undisputed reigning superphone king aka. Snapdragon MSM8960 Pro S4 SoC. What I mean is integrated multi-mode LTE modem, Wifi, bluetooth, GPS/GLONASS, FM Tx/Rx, killer graphics, et.c and then add a little something on top of that; NFC would be nice.

    Take a look at TI's OMAP and NVIDIA's Tegra. Snapdragon-based android smartphones outnumber all the other competitors combined by almost 8:1. Even Samsung used a dual core Snapdragon S4 SoC in the Galaxy S3 rather than their own quad-core Exynos. If these ARM heavyweights are still lagging behind Qualcomm SoCs I doubt Intel's "half-of-what's-required" would even make news.

    Device manufacturers are all trying to cut costs while slimming their devices down. If Intel's next x86 smartphone chip doesn't pack everything in like the Snapdragon SoCs do then they clearly don't know or have what it takes!
  • -3 Hide
    xemone , June 22, 2012 5:03 PM
    xemoneNo one should be surprised. This is a no-brainer. Note to Intel; in order for any Intel smartphone SoC to compete with the superphone chip maker Qualcomm, the said x86 SoC has to at least match the features in the undisputed reigning superphone king aka. Snapdragon MSM8960 Pro S4 SoC. What I mean is integrated multi-mode LTE modem, Wifi, bluetooth, GPS/GLONASS, FM Tx/Rx, killer graphics, et.c and then add a little something on top of that; NFC would be nice.Take a look at TI's OMAP and NVIDIA's Tegra. Snapdragon-based android smartphones outnumber all the other competitors combined by almost 8:1. Even Samsung used a dual core Snapdragon S4 SoC in the US Galaxy S3 rather than their own quad-core Exynos. If these ARM heavyweights are still lagging behind Qualcomm SoCs I doubt Intel's "half-of-what's-required" would even make news.Device manufacturers are all trying to cut costs while slimming their devices down. If Intel's next x86 smartphone chip doesn't pack everything in like the Snapdragon SoCs do then they clearly don't know or have what it takes!

  • -3 Hide
    Anonymous , June 22, 2012 6:49 PM
    Intel Medfield single core but 2 processor threads. not single core! "being single core trounces the various dual core arm socs and comes close to the quads" Please read up on Hyperthreading! Please do not comment on Intel Processors without stating 'with or without Hyperthreading' when you describe the core count. The core i5 on my laptop has 2 cores but 4 processor threads, Via Hyperthreading, and shows up in the task manager as having 4 cores! Intel Medfield in the Xolo 900 has hyperthreading!

    http://www.xolo.in/xolo-x900-specifications
  • 1 Hide
    ojas , June 22, 2012 7:11 PM
    Well for one, it was a relatively limited and quiet launch and they launched a good enough phone, not a flagship. Probably have to wait on that one.

    Also, it's only been a month or two since the phone's launch here in India. Rest of the world's hardly seen it. Sales seem to be picking up here, and their marketing campaign's been picking up. They're sponsoring the Euro telecasts for one, so the ads are pretty frequent.

    AnandTech has benchmarks for the Xolo X900, they've had it since april, and ffs it's the same as any other medfield phone.

    22nm will be very, very interesting. couldn't come soon enough. I also want to see WP 8 on Medfield, see if it behaves differently.

    Interesting side note: Intel teamed up with Lava to make the X900. Now Lava isn't a "brand name", if you know what i mean. Intel's done a smart (clever?) thing, they've distanced themselves from Lava completely. So now it's only Xolo X900 by Intel. Even the website doesn't mention Lava. Can't tell if Xolo's a new company co-founded by Intel and Lava or if it's just a model name.
  • 2 Hide
    tacoslave , June 22, 2012 8:23 PM
    i would love to have this in a windows 8 tablet
  • 3 Hide
    eddieroolz , June 24, 2012 2:32 PM
    Considering that I see this as a first-generation test product, they're doing okay.
  • 0 Hide
    hetneo , June 25, 2012 1:02 AM
    xemoneNo one should be surprised. This is a no-brainer. Note to Intel; in order for any Intel smartphone SoC to compete with the superphone chip maker Qualcomm, the said x86 SoC has to at least match the features in the undisputed reigning superphone king aka. Snapdragon MSM8960 Pro S4 SoC. What I mean is integrated multi-mode LTE modem, Wifi, bluetooth, GPS/GLONASS, FM Tx/Rx, killer graphics, et.c and then add a little something on top of that; NFC would be nice.Take a look at TI's OMAP and NVIDIA's Tegra. Snapdragon-based android smartphones outnumber all the other competitors combined by almost 8:1. Even Samsung used a dual core Snapdragon S4 SoC in the Galaxy S3 rather than their own quad-core Exynos. If these ARM heavyweights are still lagging behind Qualcomm SoCs I doubt Intel's "half-of-what's-required" would even make news.Device manufacturers are all trying to cut costs while slimming their devices down. If Intel's next x86 smartphone chip doesn't pack everything in like the Snapdragon SoCs do then they clearly don't know or have what it takes!

    Galaxy S III is with Exynos, the international model GT-I9300.
  • 0 Hide
    CrArC , June 25, 2012 10:02 AM
    house70Hardly anyone ever heard of them. On top of that, the only benchmark available for the San Diego model is not very flattering (against SGS3), but somewhat better than Droid Razr. It needs to be head and shoulders above the competition for people to start paying attention to a new player. There are still no benchmarks available regarding battery life, and the launch with GB instead of ICS pretty much killed it before birth.I appreciate Intel's desire to get into the game, but they can do waaaay better than this, given their reputation and their financial power. Not to mention the lack of promotion, even worse than WinPhone.

    Eugh, they launched with GB? Jelly Bean is almost out, what the hell are they thinking?
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