Freescale unveils 'sub-£125' tablet design

Freescale unveils 'sub-£125' tablet design

Summary: The company has introduced a reference design for PC manufacturers who want to make cheap, lightweight touchscreen smartbooks for all-day use

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TOPICS: Hardware
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  • The first Sabre reference design is based on Freescale's i.MX515 processor, which is itself based on ARM Cortex-A8 technology — the same architecture that powers the iPhone 3GS, Motorola Droid and Nokia N900 smartphones.

    ARM has, through the introduction of smartbooks, begun making itself a rival to Intel, whose Atom processors are the basis of most netbooks. ARM claims that devices using its architecture are more power-efficient than those using Atom, due to the British chip-design firm's mobile heritage. However, with almost no smartbooks currently on the market, it is hard to compare the power consumption and performance of the rival platforms.

    Apart from the CPU, other features of Freescale's reference design include an accelerometer, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and 3G support, GPS, a light sensor, a three-megapixel camera, audio in and out and an SD card slot.

    The picture above shows the design together with an optional physical keyboard that manufacturers could choose to use. 

  • Freescale's new smartbook reference design measures 200mm x 128mm x 14.9cm and weighs 376 grams, which is heavier than a smartphone but substantially lighter than a netbook. This is achieved because the device does not need a fan or heat sink, due to its low power consumption.

    The company said in its statement that the tablet design, which provides a resolution of 1,024 x 600 pixels, would run applications such as a web browser, media centre, PDF viewer, mail client, office suite and social media widgets.

    Freescale said in its statement that devices based on its design would give users "instant-on functionality, persistent connectivity and all-day battery life", although it has not yet given a precise life for the 1,900mAh battery.

Topic: Hardware

David Meyer

About David Meyer

David Meyer is a freelance technology journalist. He fell into journalism when he realised his musical career wouldn't pay the bills. David's main focus is on communications, as well as internet technologies, regulation and mobile devices.

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