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CES: Intel aims an Atom chip at low-cost mobile handsets

Atom Z2420 looks to take on emerging markets
Mon Jan 07 2013, 22:45
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LAS VEGAS: CHIPMAKER Intel has introduced an addition to its Atom lineup to target the emerging market sector.

The company said that its Atom Z2420 chip will allow hardware vendors to create mobile handsets that can bring smartphone features to the traditional low-cost market.

Powered by a 1.2ghz processor core, the Atom Z2420 will support multithreading and will be designed to run Android. Handsets using the chip will be designed for dual-SIM deployments and will sport FM radio connectivity and microSD storage slots.

"We view this as a full-function, feature rich, no-compromise platform," said Mike Bell, Intel VP and general manager of mobile and communications.

The Atom Z2420 chip will join an Atom lineup that previously has been limited to the high-end smartphone market. The company plans to continue its high-end push with the Clover Trail+ chip, which is due to reach the market later this year.

With the new chip, however, Intel is looking to move into the developing world. The company said that it has already secured deals with mobile vendors including Acer, Safaricom and Lava to develop handsets for developing regions.

The company hopes that in doing so, it can begin to bring smartphone operations such as web browsing to low-cost areas which had previously been the realm of feature phones.

"This segment is one of the fastest-growing in the mobile device world," explained Bell.

"We think smartphones have become a fundamentally enabling platform that should be within everyone's reach."

Intel said that details and availability dates for the first mobile devices based on the Atom Z2420 chip will be released later in the quarter.


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