It all started with the T-Mobile G1 in 2008; The first Android powered smartphone. 3.2″ screen, 528 MHz processor, 192 MB RAM, 256 MB ROM, QWERTY keyboard. It was a very underpowered device, but it set the wheels in motion. The Android revolution had begun.
Fast-forward to 2010. Google releases the Nexus One. The N1 was intended to be a “reference” phone. It had the latest hardware (1GHz processor, 512 MB RAM and ROM, 5 MP Camera), a larger, 3.7″, AMOLED screen with a higher resolution, and it ran vanilla Android. This phone (along with the previously released Motorola DROID) signified the start of “Gen 2″ in the Android universe. Throughout 2010, many manufactures followed suit, releasing phones with similar specs to the Nexus One. Some had larger screens. Some with QWERTY keyboards. Heck, a couple even saw a bump in processing power, to 1.2GHz. Never-the-less, they were all still pretty much Gen 2.
Fast-forward to present day…well, a few weeks ago. Consumer Electronics Show 2011 (CES) opens its door to the public. Traditionally, CES was all about audio and video products. Over the past decade, computers and other tech gear has started to infiltrate the show floor. Mobile phones and tablets have now carved out their own space. Manufacturers and carriers alike are using CES to announce upcoming products and services. Most of the phones shared some common attributes; larger screens, 4G technology, front-facing camera. But just a few stood above the rest. What makes these phones so special? Dual-core processors.
Motorola stole the show by announcing, not one, but two phones that feature dual-core processors. The Atrix 4G and the DROID Bionic. The Atrix 4G will be available on AT&T and features a 4″ qHD screen (540×960 @ 240 dpi), 1GHz NVIDIA Tegra 2 dual-core processor, 1 GB RAM, 5 MP rear camera and a .3 MP front-facing camera. Additionally, the Atrix 4G will have a whole host of accessories, including the standard-issue home and car docks. It will also have two specialty docks. The Laptop Dock has a large screen and keyboard. It gives you access to Firefox web browsing, as well as the ability to still access your apps and make calls. The HD Multimedia dock allows you to connect up to 3 USB devices, like a keyboard.
As the name suggests, the DROID Bionic is part of the Verizon Wireless’ DROID series. It has the same processor as the Atrix 4G. However, it only has 512 MB ram. Other differences include a 4.3″ screen (still qHD), 16 GB internal storage, and an 8 MP camera (with the front cam). It doesn’t look like the Bionic have the same accessory mix as its brother. I’d be willing to bet that there will be basic home and car docs. One neat feature of the Bionic is Mirror Mode.
Multiply your fun with Mirror Mode, which lets you enjoy all of your favorite apps, websites, videos, photos, and games full-screen on your larger home TV.
This is something that I’ve been looking for in a phone. It will be great to be able to demo apps for clients or for presentations.
Motorola isn’t the only manufacturer throwing their hat into the dual-core ring. LG announced the Optimus 2X some time ago and Samsung is teasing their next generation phone, just ahead of Mobile World Congress.
With Mobile World Congress and CTIA just around the corner, I expect that most of the hottest new phones will rock dual-core processors. Rumor has it that there will be quad-core phones out by December of this year. I’ll believe it when I see it.