Is an Intel-powered Samsung smartphone in the OEM’s future?
For the past couple years now, Intel’s been nipping at the heels of the smartphone industry, trying to get some attention. The company’s interested in seeing its Atom SoCs find homes in mobile devices, but so far interest has been spotty at best; we’ll see the odd Intel-powered model here and there, but rarely do we see a manufacturer keep returning to Intel over and over, as they do with Qualcomm. Last year Samsung got in bed with Intel when it used the company’s chips in its tablets, but now we hear that Samsung may be ready to step things up a notch and could be planning to release an Intel-running smartphone.
According to rumors out of South Korea, Samsung is working on a phone powered by an Intel Atom Z3500 Moorehead chip. The 64-bit SoC would be underclocked from its 2.3GHz max to somewhere down closer to 1.7GHz in order to minimize power consumption, and while that’s not going to help performance any, word is that this phone would be targeted at the lower-end market anyway. Really, though, that sounds like it could come off as pretty upper-mid-range to us.
Reportedly, Intel is big on seeing this phone happen, to the extent that it could be making those Moorehead chips available to Samsung essentially at cost. Considering the uphill battle Intel’s been fighting to make a name for itself in the SoC game this decade, maybe that’s just what it had to do in order to get a fighting chance.
The Intel-powered Samsung phone could launch sometime later this year.