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Jun 22, 2014

HTC Nexus 8 with Tegra K1 Processor Leaks Out with Specs, Image and Price

By now you are probably aware Google’s I/O conference is scheduled to begin this week. And one of the hottest products we’re expecting to see appearing into the world is the Nexus 8 tablet.

Rumors proclaiming the existence of the slate have been intensifying in the past few weeks, but we still didn’t know the exact coordinates related to the tablet. The Nexus 8 is quite eagerly expected especially since LG’s Ken Hong announced the company won’t be making the next Nexus phone. So it appears the future of the Nexus line lies with the 8-incher that’s supposedly going to be unveiled in a few days. In anticipation of the big event, Android Police managed to get a hold of hot info detailing specs and pricing of the device. On top of that we get to see a picture of the tablet that has been nicknamed HTC Volantis (Flounder). Ok. So you’re probably extremely curious of the specifications, because the rumors couldn’t agree so far on what the Nexus 8 will come equipped with.

Well it appears the slate will offer a superior 2048 x 1440 (281 ppi) resolution and draw life from – listen to this – NVIDIA’s Logan 64-bit processor (Tegra K1). This is contrary to what earlier reports claimed. First off, word on the street had it Google’s new slate will take advantage of the Moorefield 64-bit platform, but then another story surfaced claiming the chip inside will be Qualcomm’s. Incidentally, this weekend we argued in a story that the NVIDIA Tegra K1 chip might see success if implemented in tablets not smartphones. For the time being, Xiaomi’s MiPad is the only tablet taking advantage of the chip architecture, but Google’s Project Tango Dev Kits are also equipped with this particular platform. And with Google and HTC adopting the Tegra K1, NVIDIA might be headed on the right path. The device will be fitted with 2GB of RAM and either 16GB/32GB of internal storage. Two cameras will complete the picture, in the form of 8MP OIS main camera and 3MP front facing camera.

The slate’s stereo speakers will live in front and the tablet will take advantage of the aluminum zero-gap construction. As for proportions, the Nexus 8 will be 8.91x5.98x0.31 inches / 22.63x15.9x0.79cm. The tablet will weigh 418 g / 14.74 ounces or 427 g / 15.1 ounces if we’re talking about the LTE version. By comparison the Nexus 7 (2013) weights 290 g / 10.1 ounces and 299 g / 10.5 ounces for the LTE model. Anyway, things get a little bit complicated when we take a look at the photo where some incongruities can be spotted. For starters, the front-facing speakers are nowhere in sight and the casing doesn’t really bring about aluminum zero-gap construction vibes. We’re either looking at an earlier model or the information might as well be fake. There’s also info about the pricing of the device. Apparently the tablet will sell for $399 / €293 when it comes to the 16GB version and $499 / €367 for the 32GB version. The LTE model will certainly be the more expensive one, taking you back with $600 / €441. So would you pay this amount of money for HTC Volantis?

Image showing the purporting Nexus 8
Image credits to AndroidPolice

This is why NVIDIA’s Tegra K1 Chips Have a Chance To Succeed in Tablets, Not Smartphones

NVIDIA has been in the industry of performance processors and graphic cards for some time now, carving a place for itself in the ecosystem.

But NVIDIA wants to go beyond what has been considered traditionally their territory. The company is currently focusing a lot of its efforts into its mobile division. Granted, things might have started slowly for the chip-maker, at first because some of its earlier products ended up in unknown devices such as the Microsoft Zune but slowly the company picked itself up and started catering to tablets and Android gaming consoles. The company also pushed out a tablet of its own and based on the time we spend with it, we can say the Tegra Note 7 is quite a great product, coming at a super affordable price-tag. However, NVIDIA chips haven’t seen much success in the smartphone department. Some of you might be familiar with the Tegra 4i program which was the company’s attempt to infiltrate the ecosystem, but sadly the project attracted quite a few partners and only a few truly interesting products were launched under the banner, like the LG G2 Mini.

But even if at one point, NVIDIA was said to be abandoning the smartphone race in order to keep focusing on what it was getting pretty good at, meaning tablets, a new rumor recently surfaced claiming otherwise. Apparently, NVIDIA is not ready to call it quits and will be trying to penetrate the smartphone world with high-end performance focused models with 4G LTE. But will this be a success story? A big reason why we don’t see NVIDIA chips in smartphones too often is due to their pretty high cost. NVIDIA’s current Tegra K1 chip (both 32-bit and 64-bit) comes equipped with an ICERA modem, which significantly bumps up the price of the processor. On the other hand, the competition like Qualcomm integrates modems within their chips.

And NVIDIA hasn’t much to brag about when it comes to its smartphone portfolio, so companies like the one mentioned above might have the upper hand just because they are a more common presence on the market. However, all is not lost for the company’s mobile ambitions. The Tegra K1 might still be put to good use, but in tablets. Strangely enough, even as the chip architecture has been made available for a while now and proven to provide excellent performance, not a lot of device makers have readily jumped at the opportunity equip their products with the new Tegra. Most recently, Chinese smartphone manufacturer, Xiaomi introduced what could be called the first tablet running the platform. The device looks like a plastic colorful copy of the iPad mini with Retina display and offers great specs for a bargain price ($275 / €201).

But this tablet isn’t currently being sold in the US just yet. Nevertheless, Google seems to have adopted the chip platform for its Project Tango Tablet Developer Kit. The effort, which aims to bring 3D mapping capabilities to tablets might bring about huge benefits for NVIDIA, if Tango manages to carve its way to the mainstream. Also, word on the street has it, NVIDIA might be making its way to the heart of Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablets, which are the retail giant’s most popular products to date. Another huge push forward for NVIDIA if that were to happen. Last but not least, NVIDIA will most likely soon launch the next-gen Tegra Note 7 which will certainly take advantage of the new chip. We have seen the tablet appear in benchmarks before and if all the above things add, we might see NVIDIA become quite a player in the tablet chip ecosystem.

NVIDIA Tegra K1 chips might become popular in tablets
Image credits to Teechbapp

Xiaomi's MiPad is one of the few tablets running a Tegra K1
Image credits to Xiaomi

Google is also giving Tegra K1 a go
Image credits to Liliputing

Nexus 6 Might Sport a 5.5-Inch Screen

Later this year, Google might unveil to the world a new handset in the Nexus series of smartphones, supposedly called Nexus 6 and expected to be the last device in the lineup, and some more info on it is now available.

According to a recent article on Ausdroid, Nexus 6 is indeed in the works and should make an official appearance on shelves sometime in October or November, which would be one year after the release of Nexus 5. Moreover, the news site claims that the upcoming device will sport a large, 5.5-inch touchscreen, similar to that available on LG G3 today. The one thing that hasn’t been confirmed as of now is whether the phone will boast the same Quad HD resolution that LG’s flagship phone offers. Furthermore, it also remains to be seen whether the handset will be based on LG G3 (as the comparison above suggests), or will be coming from a completely different vendor.

Earlier this week, an LG official said that the company won’t be building the Nexus 6, which means that, despite having a 5.5-inch screen, the upcoming phone will have nothing in common with LG G3. At the same time, it remains to be seen whether the upcoming handset will be the last in the Nexus series, as previously reported. Apparently, Google will launch a follow-up program next year, in the form of Android Silver, and will include only top-of-the-line devices in it.

LG Nexus 5
Image credits to Google

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 Model Number List Leaks

Later this year, South Korean mobile phone maker Samsung Electronics is expected to make official a new device in the popular Galaxy Note series of phones, and the full list of model numbers that this smartphone will sport appears to have leaked online.

Supposedly called Samsung Galaxy Note 4, the device has been rumored a few times before to arrive on the market in multiple iterations, with different internal storage options and more than one screen variant. The aforementioned model number list, available courtesy of @evleaks, confirms that the smartphone will be released in the United States on the networks of major carriers, including AT&T, Verizon, Sprint (SPR), and T-Mobile (TMB). Moreover, it shows that users in the country might receive only the 32GB variant of the mobile phone, as Samsung won’t launch the 16GB model here as well. As mentioned above, Galaxy Note 4 emerged online a few times before, and some of those reports on it have already confirmed the fact that it would feature model number SM-N910x. The newly-leaked list not only confirms that, but it also shows that previous speculation on various iterations of the device destined for specific carriers will pan out. Overall, 22 different Galaxy Note 4 models are expected to arrive on the market.

For example, we can see the SM-N910A model for AT&T in the US, along with SM-N910F, which might be the international variant of the handset, and other flavors of the phone, destined for different carriers in various markets out there. Moreover, the SM-N910C and SM-N910S versions of the handset that were spotted yesterday in leaked benchmarks are also included in the list, supposedly confirming that they are real. One thing that should be noted here, however, is the fact that there’s no official confirmation on the existence of Galaxy Note 4 as of now, and that we should take the info above with a grain of salt. In the meantime, however, we should note that the handset is expected launch with a 5.7-inch touchscreen display capable of delivering a Quad HD resolution, and that both Exynos and Snapdragon 805 flavors of the phone are expected to arrive on the market.

Moreover, rumor has it that the smartphone will include 3GB of RAM when launched, along with the aforementioned 16GB/32GB internal memory options, and a microSD card slot for storage expansion. The phone should feature a 16-megapixel camera on the back, capable of recording videos in 4K resolution, along with an upgraded front camera for making video calls. The latest version of Android should also be included on the handset.

Galaxy Note 4 model number list
Image credits to evleaks

Huawei G621-TL00 Spotted Online with 64-Bit CPU

As it turns out, Samsung might not be the only mobile phone maker out there set to launch a 64-bit smartphone in the near future, as Chinese phone maker Huawei is also preparing such a device.

Featuring model number Huawei G621-TL00, the smartphone has been spotted in AnTuTu with a Snapdragon 410 processor (a quad-core Cortex-A53) and Adreno 306 graphics inside. Should the info that said benchmark has unveiled on this smartphone pan out, we’ll see it released with 1GB of RAM inside, as well as with 8GB of internal memory, a recent post on hk-android.info reads. Moreover, the handset is said to be destined for the Chinese market, featuring 4G TD-LTE connectivity and the Android 4.4 KitKat operating system loaded on top.

At the same time, Huawei G621-TL00 is expected to arrive on shelves with a 5-inch touchscreen display capable of delivering a 720p resolution, as well as with a 5-megapixel camera on the back. A 2MP front camera should also be included. No official confirmation on the smartphone has been provided as of now, yet the hardware specs rumored for it don’t seem far-fetched, and chances are that it will make an official appearance with all of the capabilities mentioned above in the not-too-distant future. Stay tuned for more on this.

Huawei G621-TL00
Image credits to AnTuTu via hk-android.info

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