Promising faster connections that will speed growth and adoption of smartphones in new markets, Qualcomm Technologies Inc. on Monday introduced its Snapdragon 410 system-on-a-chip with integrated 4G LTE World Mode.
'Inflection Point' Coming
Using 28 nanometer process technology, the latest Snapdragon chipsets are part of Qualcomm's efforts to tap into the growing 4G LTE market in China. Just last week China granted its first licenses for that high-speed mobile data technology, known as TD, or time division, LTE. The 410 chips have processors that are 64-bit capable, meaning they can handle more information and do more multitasking than their 32-bit predecessors.
Qualcomm says its 410s offer superior graphics performance with Adreno 306 GPU, 1080p video playback and cameras up to 13 megapixels and integrate LTE and 3G technology around the world. Qualcomm says it will now make 4G LTE available across all of its Snapdragon product tiers.
"Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 with LTE support will extend Qualcomm's leadership in one of the fastest growing sub-segment, LTE smartphones," said analyst Neil Shah of CounterPoint Research.
"Qualcomm's new solution will allow mobile operators and handset OEMs to bring LTE devices to the mass market quicker than expected." Shah added that the coming year is expected to be the "inflection point" for LTE network rollouts with the 410 chips as the catalyst.
"China, India and Latin America will be the key markets for this solution," Shah said. "This also means tough competition for Chinese and Taiwanese chipset vendors such as MediaTek and Spreadtrum to grow in the LTE subsegment."
Apple also introduced 64-bit capability with its latest iPhone, the 5s, introduced in September with its iOS 7 system.
The 64-bit capability will allow the development of faster and more sophisticated apps and allow smartphones to better handle video, though it will likely be several years before app developers catch up to the technology and have products on the market.
The new 410 chipsets are available for all major operating systems, including Android, Windows and Firefox (Apple has its own processors for iOS). They also feature Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, FM and near-field communication functionality, and support GPS, GLONASS, and China’s new BeiDou navigation.
“We are excited to bring 4G LTE to highly affordable smartphones at a sub $150 price point with the introduction of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 processor ,” said Jeff Lorbeck, senior vice president and chief operating officer, Qualcomm Technologies, China, in a statement.
“The Snapdragon 410 chipset will also be the first of many 64-bit capable processors as Qualcomm Technologies helps lead the transition of the mobile ecosystem to 64-bit processing,” he said
Announcements by manufacturers of devices running the 410 chips should be coming shortly.