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MediaTek readies system-on-chip for high-end smartphones, tablets

For many years MediaTek has been a supplier of affordable system-on-chip (SoC) solutions for smartphones and inexpensive tablets. However, starting this year the company will start to offer higher-performance application processors aimed at mainstream devices. But MediaTek does not want to stop there. A leaked roadmap shows that next year the Hsinchu, Taiwan-based designer of chips will target the market of high-end smartphones.

A Chinese blogger has published a new roadmap of MediaTek (which was republished by Chinese VR-Zone) that adds a premium system-on-chip for smartphones due in late-Q4 2014 or early Q1 2015 into the plan. The MediaTek MT6795 SoC is a 64-bit successor of the Cortex A17-based MT6595, which is available now. The MT6795 application processor is positioned higher than the eight-core MT6752 and will likely rival not only Qualcomm Snapdragon 610, but even the top-of-the-range Qualcomm Snapdragon 810.

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The MediaTek MT6795 integrates eight unknown 64-bit ARMv8-A cores (presumably four ARM Cortex-A53 + four ARM Cortex-A57) with up to 2.20GHz clock-rate as well as an ARM Mali graphics engine with support for OpenGL ES 3.0/2.0/1, Direct3D 11.1, OpenCL as well as RenderScript application programming interfaces. The SoC features a video processor with H.264, H.265 encoder/decoder and motion quality enhancer as well as 20MP camera image signal processor. The chip will support 4K/UHD video playback and displays with up to 2560*1600 resolution.

The MT6795 system-on-chip will come with integrated multi-mode baseband capabilities supporting rel 9 cat 4 4G/LTE FDD and TDD LTE with data rates up to 150Mbits/s downlink and 50Mbits/s uplink, DC-HSPA+ (42Mbits/s) and TD-SCDMA. Expect the chip to feature Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.0 LE, GPS/GLONASS and other things.

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MediaTek’s application processors usually target smartphones from various Chinese manufacturers, such as Huawei or ZTE. Since many of such companies are currently targeting the high-end market, it is logical for the semiconductor designer to offer advanced SoCs to them.

MediaTek did not comment on the news-story.

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KitGuru Says: It looks like MediaTek now not only rivals Qualcomm on the market of mainstream SoCs, but it is gearing up to fight for the market of lucrative high-end system-on-chips for premium devices. Since MediaTek will unlikely be able to offer a considerably better solution than the Snapdragon 810, it will use its main trump: lower price. Eventually such approach will help to drive down manufacturing costs and prices of high-end smartphones.

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