Latest update: ZTE Light Tablet with Pixel Qi screen [June 3, 2011]
While this is not yet with the anti-glare anti-reflective coating and the reflective mode for touch is not yet implemented in this ZTE sample, this is how the ZTE Light with Pixel Qi might look like, the fully optimized version should be shipping in the third quarter [end of Q3] of this year.
Leveraging Pixel Qi’s technology, four tablets will be launched for China’s growing e-reader market, and are being shown at GITEX in Dubai. Combining Pixel Qi’s displays with Shizhu’s design creates an excellent multi-media experience in a slim, lightweight design with extended battery life. Shizhu has a key partnership with Southern Media Group, whose paper publications reach millions of subscribers daily, and whose media set the pace for investigative journalism, popular and gossip content, and online presence in China.
(See also: Content Really Matters for Tablets [Mary Lou Jepsen’s blog, Oct 12, 2011])
Latest update: Pixel Qi launches 10.1″ super thin 1280×800 screen [May 31, 2011]
Here’s a new comparison between Pixel Qi and the iPad followed by Mary Lou Jepsen’s status report on the latest Pixel Qi news, their first showing of the new 1280×800 thinner 10.1″ wide view screen.
[10:20 — 10:25]:
“We think our technology will be the dominant display technology in 5 years.”
[11:17 — 11:41]:
“It’s bit market driven from our customers because we get to exist and to engage some of the largest factories that have ever been made, and for that to work their economics need very high volumes. We need to have customers who really commit to large purchase orders almost before we start to design.”
See also: Mary Lou Jepsen of Pixel Qi at TEDxTaipei [May 9, 2011] (emphasis is mine)
You have to consider, while it has been 23 months ago that I [i.e. Charbax] published my first Pixel Qi interviews from Taiwan (2), (3), (4), (5), (6), (7), (8), (9), (10), (11), (12), (13), (14) while that might sound like a long time, in the display industry, 2 years is peanuts. Things move rather slowly there. Since then, there has been an economic crisis and a sort of re-focus from netbooks to tablets, although netbooks have sold more than 100 million units in 3 years, the display investments are focused on tablets. The display business can be considered to be the worlds biggest non-profit industry, the 5 biggest LCD makers who produce 90% of the worlds LCDs, produce for $120 Billion in screens every year but can only make small profit margins out of that because of the strong competition and the large volumes shipped. Those companies that produce the worlds LCD screens have very high costs, very high risks, little flexibility. Let’s hope Pixel Qi has amply well convinced the big LCD makers like Quanta, CPT, Chi Mei, Samsung, LG, Sharp, Sony, Foxconn, let’s hope that they have all signed with Pixel Qi and that they are all right now in the process of tuning the mass manufacture of millions of these screens for all the worlds upcoming Chrome OS notebooks, ARM Powered Macbooks, Kindle4s, iPad3s, a solution for using the interactive UIs of Android on all the worlds e-readers. It would also be nice to double the battery runtime and improve outdoor readability on all the worlds Smartphones using Pixel Qi.
On Mobile World Congress 2011 the Chinese ZTE Announces Smart Terminal Strategy Aiming At the Middle-to-High-End Markets [Feb 15] (emphasis is mine):
The smart terminal strategy signifies ZTE’s accelerated move to embrace the middle-to-high-end markets, while demonstrating its commitment to offering an entire range of star products in the smart device market. The product portfolio will span from smart personal devices to smart home and business products. Currently very few companies in the industry can offer smart products in all three categories.
The latest IDC report shows that ZTE was among the top five in the world in terms of the sales volume of handsets in 2010. According to analysts, ZTE’s previous terminal strategy focusing on middle-to-low-end products obviously no longer fits with the current competition landscape and the company’s own position in the industry.
ZTE, with its dominant presence in the smart terminal arena and deep understanding of smart technologies trends, has been increasing its investment in this field. In the last two years, it has become a mainstream player in the global smart terminals markets with the introduction of star products including the first WM6.5 smartphone, Bluebelt 2, the Blade Android smartphone, and the Light tablet PC. The great performance of the Blade in high-end markets including Europe and Japan has also proved its operational ability in the smart products market.
Smart terminal devices at MWC 2011
ZTE is showcasing an entire range of smart terminal products to the industry at this year’s Mobile World Congress, including the Skate Android smartphone with its 4.3-inch super-large screen, the Amigo Android slide-cover phone specifically designed for young and fashionable users who like social networking; the Blade Android smartphone and the Brew MP handset, the F952, which is based on the WAC (Wholesale Applications Community) standard, as well as the Rugged Blade which incorporates “three proof” (dustproof, waterproof, and shockproof) functionality.
ZTE also showcased the Light series tablet PCs – including the 7 inch Light which is popular in Europe, Australia, and Russia, the Light 2 which will be the first tablet that uses the Pixel Qi’s sunlight-readable liquid crystal screen and DOLBY sound system technology, and the Light 10-inch, which features a faster processor, supports Android 3.0 and will be launched in Q3 2011.
In addition, with the Internet TV Box, ZTE is able to integrate TV as a consumer electronics product for home use into the camp of smart terminal products as it uses multiple Internet access modes including 3G, HSPA+ and WiFi to make it a novel integrated terminal combining Web surfing, HD movies, video calls, gaming, and DLNA at the same time.
Latest update: Pixel Qi launches new displays at Computex [May 19]
At Computex 2011 we will show two new additions to our family of sunlight-readable low-power displays. Both the new 7″ display (1024×600 resolution) and the new 10″ display (1280×800 resolution) build on Pixel Qi’s award-winning technology delivering excellent rendering of multi-media and e-reader content under any conditions – and at a power savings of up to 80% over conventional LCDs.
Latest update: Pixel Qi takes aim at Android tablets with higher-res 10-inch and 7-inch reflective LCDs (hands-on) [May 31, 2011]
… the team has returned to Computex with the 7-inch (1024 x 600) panel that was teased in December last year and a new higher resolution 10-inch (1280 x 800) panels offering an 80 percent power savings over conventional LCDs, according to Pixel Qi. In fact, the 10-inch panel consumes just 2.7W in color mode or 0.4W in reflective “eReader” mode.
We had the chance to see the new displays up close here at Computex and were immediately struck by the improvement in pixel density on the 10-inch panel. Making the leap to WVGA has been a major boon, as identical images looked sharper and better-defined than on the 1024 x 600 current-gen Pixel Qi display. The brightness on the new screen is lower than on its predecessor, but that’s because the company still hasn’t finalized things — we’re promised significantly better readability with the backlight off in the final product and brighter pictures when it’s on. The 7-incher, originally intended for mass production in the second quarter will now sample in Q3, to be followed by the more pixel-dense 10-inch model, which will hit production in Q4. Scope out the newness in the gallery below or jump past the break for video.
This is extremely good news for Pixel Qi trying to pursue device manufacturers to use its outstanding screen technology for more than a year already. Their press release is quite proud to announce that ZTE introduces 7” Tablet PC with Pixel Qi’s Sunlight Readable Low Power Display [Feb 14] (emphasis is mine):
Leveraging leading edge technologies from both companies, the Light 2 tablet combines the features and performance of a 1GHz processor running the Android operating system with a 7-inch high-resolution Pixel Qi display to offer an excellent multi-media experience in a slim, light weight design with extended battery life.
“We are excited to partner with Pixel Qi to bring their innovative display technology to market,” said Adam Zhang, VP & President of ZTE Mobile Broadband Device. “It brings a new level of performance to our family of tablet PC’s, rendering excellent images under any light conditions.”
“Working with ZTE, a world-leading telecommunication company with a global customer base, provides us with an extraordinary opportunity to address a world-wide market,” added Dr. Mary Lou Jepsen, CEO and founder of Pixel Qi. “We look forward to a long-lasting partnership.”
The display is manufactured in a Pixel Qi partnership with CPT (Chunghwa Picture Tubes Ltd.). Based in Taoyuan, Taiwan, CPT manufactures nearly 40 million displays per month and is the #2 manufacturer of small and middle sized LCDs in the world. [See more on that in my post Pixel Qi and CPT alliance for sunlight readability [Dec 22, 2010]]
The ZTE Light 2 tablet PC features a 12.6mm super slim design, Android 2.2, a hi-speed 1GHz processor and 4GB of memory. The 7-inch low-power Pixel Qi display has multi-touch capacitive touch screen and a screen resolution of 1024×600 pixels delivering a pixel density of 170 pixels per inch.
Pixel Qi’s award-winning 3Qi display technology renders quality full-color images plus full-motion video and, in high ambient light levels, its reflective mode contributes to the image allowing the backlight to be turned down or off. This delivers significant power savings and a very comfortable reading experience.
Update: Why Amazon Will Enter the Overcrowded Tablet Market [May 23, 2011] (emphasis is mine)
In a recent interview with Consumer Reports, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos was asked if Amazon would make a tablet. He coyly responded with the comment “stay tuned” but gave no other specific details about a product of this nature. He basically confirmed, however, that something like this was in the works. He also pointed out that if Amazon made a tablet device, the reading experience would be at the center of its design.
My sources in Taipei say that the actual product is set to debut in time for the holidays and that the device will use a display similar to the one in the Nook and the Galaxy Tab. They also tell me that the original RFQ wanted a screen that could switch between an easy-to-read black and white E Ink-like display and a color LCD, but that this type of screen, which is already in the works by at least two vendors, will not be ready for the market until at least 2012 or early 2013. So Amazon was forced to use a 10-inch screen that was available now, which is LCD-based. It will also reportedly have a 7-inch model. And I am hearing it will sport a new version of Nvidia’s Tegra quad-core chip and will be using Android as its OS.
So at least quantity wise there are still problems with PixelQi manufacturing.
More information on this update:
Amazon Tablet PC with E Ink Holdings’ Hydis FFS screen [May 3, 2011]
The new 7” display has already been shown at CES 2011. See the detailed First look at Pixel Qi’s 7 inch display, new netbooks, tablets [Jan 6] report from Liliputing and the video from them:
Pixel Qi’s displays can function both as full color LCD screens and as high contrast, grayscale displays which are viewable without a backlight by relying on ambient lighting — much like an E Ink display. The difference is that while E Ink screens have slow refresh rates, a Pixel Qi display can handle full motion video whether the screen is in color or grayscale mode. The only difference is whether the backlight is on or off.
Turning off the backlight not only makes a netbook, tablet, or other device with a Pixel Qi screen readable in direct sunlight — it also drastically reduces the amount of power used by the display — which is often one of the most power-hungry components of a computer.
The new, smaller display has the same 1024 x 600 pixel resolution as the 10 inch model. Pixel Qi has also improved the viewing angles — although they’re still not great. With the backlight off, you can view the screen from pretty wide angles. But in full color mode, the colors start to wash out pretty quickly when you view the screen from the side, which is a bigger problem with tablets than netbooks.
And here is a report from the press conference on ZTE Looking to Break Into High-end in 2011 With Smartphone, Tablet, & STB Selection [MWC] [Feb 14] (emphasis is mine):
I attended ZTE’s press conference – it wasn’t the most popular at this event, of course. But they’ve done exceptionally well with their smartphone push in 2010 and are looking to up the stakes in 2011. They will do this with a selection of new smartphones and tablets geared toward the high-end.
ZTE’s campaign plans becoming somewhat clear from their companion press release ZTE Unveils Skate Smart Phone at GSMA Mobile World Congress [Feb 15] (emphasis is mine):
Inspired by the skateboard, the ZTE Skate is fashionably thin and lightweight at only 120g, featuring a large 4.3-inch screen to provide an optimal web surfing experience to consumers. It uses the Android 2.3 operating system, an 800MHz processor and the Adreno 200 graphics processing unit (GPU) to support the widescreen, high-definition display. In addition, the ZTE Skate also incorporates a 5MP camera, multimedia Bluetooth extension, A-GPS capability, hardware compass, and G-sensor.
The open Android operating system ensures that Skate can run an extensive range of apps, meeting not only the in-depth customization needs of operators, but also providing a user-friendly UI, and convenient and powerful multimedia features. Skate supports GSM/GPRS/EDGE at 900/1800/1900MHz and HSDPA/UMTS at 900/2100MHz, as well as WiFi internet access.
The ZTE Skate is expected to be available from May 2011 in markets worldwide. The smart phone launch also kicks off ZTE’s “Light Your Smart World” smart product strategy.
An IDC report shows that ZTE has become one of the world’s top five handset makers – in 2010 the company’s global shipment of handsets reached 60 million units and terminal products over 90 million units. Signature models such as the ZTE Blade and ZTE Light became bestsellers across multiple markets, achieving outstanding sales records in more than 30 countries including Europe and Japan, within a very short period of time. The ZTE Blade was also frequently referred to as the “Most Valuable Smartphone” by media in these markets.
Pretty impressive numbers which – also given ZTE’s very close releationship with the operators – is giving a pretty good chance that the Pixel Qi based tablet will become a bestseller quite soon.
ZTE has outstanding position and extraordinary market aspirations which could benefit Pixel Qi’s long unfulfilled aspirations as well . This could be best understood from the following press releases and reports:
China’s ZTE aims for top 3 in telecom gear [Reuters, Feb 14] (emphasis is mine):
It would be a major move for ZTE, which is smaller than its better-known Chinese counterpart Huawei, and holds roughly 5 percent market share in wireless gear, according to Bernstein Research.
“We want to be in the top three in terms of revenues and market share,” said Xu Ming, vice-president of wireless services in an interview at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
Founded in 1985 in the southeastern Chinese city of Shenzhen, ZTE earned about half of its revenues outside China last year by selling both handsets and fixed and wireless network gear.
It benefits from a low-cost base like Huawei, but its margins are lower because of its lack of scale in many business lines, according to analysts.
The fastest-growing vendor in the global telecom sector
14 February 2011, Shenzhen – ZTE Corporation (“ZTE”) (H share stock code: 0763.HK / A share stock code: 000063.SZ), a leading global provider of telecommunications equipment and network solutions, today announced that in 2010 it secured contract sales worth up to RMB100 billion and a growth rate of 26%, making ZTE the fastest-growing vendor in the global telecom sector.
ZTE made this milestone achievement despite the current economic turmoil. The global market and domestic market in China both experienced a deterioration in 2010, with an annual decline in telecom investment in each market by 3% and 14% respectively.
According to a Frost & Sullivan report, “Insights on 2010 Market Performance”, ZTE has the highest compound annual growth rate (CAGR) among the top vendors in the global market. It recorded a CAGR of 28.01% between 2008-2010 and 37.48% between 2006-2010.
ZTE has achieved 29% growth of its contract sales in overseas markets especially in Europe and North America. A growing number of leading players such as France Telecom, América Móvil, MTN and Softbank embark on co-operation with ZTE and appreciate the firm’s commitment to excellent delivery. ZTE’s terminal products — Blade, Racer and Light — were sold out in the European market for the first time, highlighting the company’s strong brand reputation.
The 3G investment in China market slowed compared with the peak of 2009, and fell from RMB 160 billion in 2009 to RMB 122 billion in 2010. However, tri-network integration boosted the investment in fixed networks which enabled ZTE to achieve 22% growth in the domestic market.
Stabilization in its market share of wireless product s and focus on the 3G terminal market will consolidate ZTE’s market position and guarantee its steady and sustainable growth in the future.
ZTE Announces Preliminary Financial Results for 2010 [Jan 28] (emphasis is mine):
(Hong Kong, 27 Jan 2011) – ZTE Corporation (“ZTE” or the “Group”) (H share stock code: 0763.HK / A share stock code: 000063.SZ) today announced its 2010 Preliminary Financial Results.
Applying PRC ASBEs, during the year under review, the Group’s revenue from principal operations was approximately RMB70,332 million [US$10.7B], representing an increase of 16.69% compared to 2009. Net profit attributable to shareholders of the company was RMB3,254 million, representing an increase of 32.39% against 2009 and earnings per share amounted to RMB 1.18. The increase in net profit was mainly attributable to Group sales growth and the recognition of investment income from the listing of one of the company’s associates, Nationz Technologies Inc. by way of an initial public offering.
As of 31 December 2010, the total assets of the Group increased by 20.40% to RMB 82,287 million compared to the end of the previous year; Shareholders’ equity attribute to the owners of the company increased by 37.28% to RMB 23,097 million compared to the end of the previous year, which was mainly attributable to an increase in retained profits during 2010 and the growth in share capital and capital reserves following the company’s placing of new H shares in January 2010 and the exercise of the company’s A share Warrants in February 2010.
ZTE says 2010 net profit up 32 pct on better sales [Reuters, Jan 30] (emphasis is mine):
ZTE 2010 net profit 3.25 bln yuan vs 3.1 bln yuan f’cast
* After extraordinary items, net profit down to 2.8 bln yuan (Adds details, background, analyst quote)
HONG KONG Jan 27 (Reuters) – ZTE Corp (0763.HK)(000063.SZ), China’s No. 2 telecoms equipment maker, reported a better-than-expected 32.4 percent rise in 2010 net profit on Thursday, helped by improving demand for infrastructure projects.
ZTE said it expects to make a net profit of 3.25 billion yuan [US$0.5B] for the full year 2010, better than expectations for a 3.1 billion yuan net profit, according to a poll of 21 analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
The company made a net profit of 2.46 billion yuan in 2009, it said in a statement posted on the Hong Kong stock exchange. It also had to take a one-time extraordinary item that lowered its net profit to 2.8 bln yuan, but did not give any further details.
“The bottom line results look fairly positive,” said Alen Lin, an analyst with BNP Paribas in Hong Kong. “Looking at the revenue figures, it’s likely that India has already contributing to the company’s numbers.”
New Delhi banned Chinese telecoms equipment on security concerns for most of last year and only allowed sales to resume in September, hitting revenues at ZTE and its bigger rival Huawei Technologies [HWT.UL].
Together the two companies grew up selling equipment to the Chinese mobile market but have increasingly become formidable players on the world stage scoring major contracts in Europe and some developing countries.
In the United States, however, there has has been opposition from some factions that have raised concern about the security threats posed by a Chinese company selling telecoms equipment to U.S. operators.
“The U.S. has never counted much for ZTE, and I think this will likely remain the case for at least this year,” said Lin at BNP Paribas. (Reporting by Kelvin Soh; Editing by Hans Peters)
Follow-up: First real chances for Marvell on the tablet and smartphone fronts [Aug 21 – Sept 25, 2011]
Brazil, Russia (sort of), India, and China (BRIC) are the current leading lights for most of the businesses looking for high growth markets in 2011. This is not different for the ICT industry either. See more about that in the “Analysts about the BRIC market potential” part of this post far below. This will also be showing how promising is the new BRIC-oriented end-customer strategy of Marvell.
If one knows very little or nothing about Marvell it is recommended first to read my preceding post Marvell ARMADA beats Qualcomm Snapdragon, NVIDIA Tegra and Samsung/Apple Hummingbird in the SoC market [again] [Sept 23, 2010 with updates upto Jan 17, 2011].
Follow-up: High expectations on Marvell’s opportunities with China Mobile [May 28, 2011]
No wonder that Marvell has started to implement one of its long-range end-customer strategies, the so called Moby (see above and/or click) first in India then in other parts of the BRIC. As PC World (IDG News) reported in its Tablets Using Marvell’s Moby Design in India Soon [Jan 27] article (emphasis is mine):
Tablet computers built to Marvell’s Moby reference design should launch in India in the first half of this year, an executive of the company said on Thursday.
The chip company is partnering in India with consumer electronics vendors, mobile handset makers, and mobile service providers who will be offering the product under their own brands, said Anand Ramamoorthy, Marvell’s country head of sales and marketing in India, on Thursday. He did not disclose the names of the partners.
Marvell announced in March last year a US$99 prototype for a multimedia tablet targeted at education.
The basic configuration in India is likely to be priced closer to 10,000 rupees ($216) because of the high import duties and the cost of distribution in the country, Ramamoorthy said. In emerging markets, there isn’t a model whereby hardware costs are subsidized by service contracts, he added.
India and China will be the first among emerging markets where the tablets will ship, with plans to also introduce the products in Latin America and Eastern Europe.
As emerging markets are price-sensitive, Marvell’s strategy is to position a low-cost configuration as a volume product.
In India, the company is expecting its partners to deliver for 10,000 rupees a 7-inch tablet with a capacitive LCD screen, that will be built around the Armada 168 processor at 800 MHz, and offer 720p video and Wi-Fi connectivity. It will run the Android operating system and other open source software, Ramamoorthy said.
The actual price in these markets will depend on partners and their business and margin models, Ramamoorthy said. Some partners may decide to offer high-end, more expensive devices as well, he added.
Marvell will have two primary manufacturers globally, including Foxconn. Partners selling the tablets will however be free to choose manufacturers from a pool of Marvell’s manufacturing partners, Ramamoorthy said.
Follow-up: Kinoma is now the marvellous software owned by Marvell [Feb 15]
Marvell’s current on-line press kit [Jan 9] contains the following documentation and images related to the Moby design:
– Mobylize Prototype – It’s Time to Mobylize for America’s Students! [Fast Facts, Jan 3]
– Marvell Showcases Moby Tablet and Extensive Line of Other Advanced Connected Devices for the Always-On Lifestyle at International CTIA Wireless 2010 [CTIA Press Release, March 23, 2010]
– Marvell Drives Education Revolution with $99 All-in-One Mobile Tablet Designed for the World’s Students [Press Release, March 18, 2010]
In the latest Jan 3 Fast Facts (linked above) the following prototype features and technical specifications are given:
Moby Prototype Features
• Future-Proof Learning: Mobylize leverages the powerful and open Android OS platform to ensure an open and growing ecosystem of learning technologies
• Multi-Sensory Interaction: Mobylize’s touchscreen interface, as well as video and audio capabilities, creates a highly interactive and engaging learning experience.
• Always-On Technology: With 802.11 b/g wireless connectivity and web browsing with Adobe® Flash® Lite 3.1, students can learn seamlessly with online and offline technologies in today’s always-on environment.
• Multimedia Education: Integrated multi-media player, photo viewer, instant messaging and more drive learning potential exponentially beyond the classic textbook.
• Drives Green Classroom: Marvell technology provides high energy-efficiency that energizes hours of learning.
• ARMADA 168 (1 GHz), WMMXTM multi-media acceleration engine
• 256MB DDR2 RAM
• Android OS
• 2D graphics engine, WMMX, QdeoTM intelligent color, remapping technology
• 10.1” TFT LCD display, 1024 x 600 resolution, Capacitive touch panel
• 4GB NAND flash, Micro-SD up to 16GB
• Two stereo speakers (1W each), built-in microphone
• USB 2.0 (x1 host, 1x device) • Micro SD card, MIC and Ear phone jack, 12V DC-in
• 802.11 b/g connectivity
• 2800mAh; 7.4 volts battery
Note however that in the press release of last March (also linked above in PDF form) the higher ARMADA™ 600 class processor has been indicated:
About Marvell Moby Tablet
Powered by high-performance, highly scalable, and low-power Marvell® ARMADA™ 600 series of application processors, the Moby tablet features gigahertz-class processor speed, 1080p full-HD encode and decode, intelligent power management, power-efficient Wi-Fi/Bluetooth/FM/GPS connectivity, high performance 3D graphics capability and support for multiple software standards including full Adobe Flash, Android™ and Windows Mobile. The ultra low power Moby tablet is designed for long-battery life.
as well as for the Moby MED reference design announced in another press release Marvell Drives ‘Telehealth” Revolution with Moby MED Always-On Medical Tablet [Apr 21, 2010]. Note that Moby MED devices are quite different since (as per the press release):
Healthcare-focused Tablets With Multiple Simultaneous Viewing Screens Including Video Conferencing and Live TV Allow Consumers to Manage Medical Records, Conduct Live Physician Consultations, View 3D Images and Sonograms, Collect Real-Time Data From Personal Monitoring Devices, Access Information From Online Sources, and More.
which is currently looking much more suitable for the developed markets.
The remark, that “Some partners may decide to offer high-end, more expensive devices as well” could — however — point to the fact that even for the education market Marvell partners could use a higher end tablet offering as well, at least as an alternative. This could also explain why a Moby2 prototype design is already existing as evidenced by the image gallery shown above.
On CES 2011 the ARMADA 168 based Moby prototype has also been called Marvell 100 series tablet [Jan 6, 2011].
[CES 2011] Marvell’s foray into the tablet market sees this rather cute and well designed model, the 100 series. Unlike other tablets that are in the market, this one comes with Android 2.2 (instead of 2.1), while sporting a rather young, all-white design with all the lines in the right places. A microSD memory card slot is there for expansion purposes, and you won’t get multi-touch support on the 10” display which is a bummer, so forget about zooming in or out in Angry Birds. There is 1GB of internal memory inside, while Wi-Fi connectivity is supported although 3G will not be present when it hits the market sometime this year for $199 a pop [with $99 manufacturing cost — see in the below video]. Of course, as with Marvell’s OLPC project, the 100 series will target the educational environment more. It is pretty heavy, but it won’t weigh a ton like most textbooks. Looks hardy enough to stand up to the rigors of restless kids, too! Interestingly enough, being an Android-powered device, it has more than the usual 4 buttons of Home, Menu, Back and Search, but will include the “Up” and “Down” buttons, too.
while the more performant one which is based on ARMADA 600 is also called 600 series accordingly. More information:
– Marvell 600 series tablet has interesting implications [6 Jan]
– Marvell 600 Tablet Series Graphics Performance Demo at CES 2011 [Jan 24]
– and the video Mobylize Tablet on ABC News: Good to Know [Jan 10, 2011]
Note while watching the video that the LCD screen used in the tablet has wide viewing angle.
The title of the above is mentioning “Mobylize” instead of “Moby”. This is a typical confusion. The truth is that Mobylize is:
a campaign aimed at improving technology adoption in America’s classrooms
which was announced with the One Laptop per Child and Marvell Join Forces to Redefine Tablet Computing for Students Around the World [May 27, 2010] by which:
Marvell and OLPC Empower Education Industry to Revolutionize the Classroom Experience through Advanced, Affordably-Priced Tablets
and which was extensively discussed in my post Marvell ARMADA with sun readable and unbreakable Pixel Qi screen, and target [mass] manufacturing cost of $75 [Nov 4, 2010].
7″ Tablet with a 7″ TFT LCD display of 800 x 480 resolution, Bluetooth 2.1 and with form, size and weight as shown below:
10″ Tablet with a 10.1″ TFT LCD display of 1024 x 600 resolution and with form, size and weight as shown below:
with the rest of the specifications the same, i.e.
– Processor: ARMADA 168 (1 GHz), WMMX™ multi-media acceleration engine
– Memory: 256MB DDR2 RAM
– OS: Android
– Graphics/Video: 2D graphics engine, Various format video decode up to 720p through S/W, Qdeo™ intelligent color remapping technology
– Display: with resistive touch panel
– Storage: 4GB NAND flash, Micro-SD up to 16GB
– Audio: Built-in microphone, Two stereo speakers
– Sensors: Accelerometer [s ?for 10″ one?]
– Ports: USB 2.0 (x1 host, 1x device), 2-in-1 card reader, MIC and Ear phone jack, 12V DC-in
– Connectivity: 802.11 b/g
– Battery: 2200mAh; ~8 hour use
– Example Features: Complete web browsing experience with Adobe® Flash® Lite 3.1, Multi-media player, Photo viewer, Instant messaging
Currently the Mobylize Development Kit with the 10″ version is available for pre-order from Aluratek for $299. Till Feb 28 there is CES Promotion with 20% off. It is shipping April 15th. Aluratek will introduce a similar 10″ product of its own in February, called Cinepad, which is ensuring Moby tablets availability in the US as well:
– CES 2011: Aluratek Announces Libre Air eBook Reader with Wi-Fi and
New Cinepad Android Tablet [Jan 6]
– Aluratek Cinepad & Libre Coming In April [VIDEO] [Jan 13]
– CES 2011 – Aluratek Cinepad [Jan 10]
– The Year of the Tablet [Jan 18]
Within Mobilize there was also an app competition (see: Marvell to Fund Next Generation Education Apps [Sept 27, 2010]) with recent results as per Marvell Announces Winners of Its ‘$100K Challenge’ Tablet App Competition [Jan 6]:
The winner of the $50,000 top prize is the application Battleship Numberline, a multitouch educational game that helps strengthen math skills. “Improving your ability to estimate along a number line correlates with math performance all the way up to 6th grade,” said lead developer Derek Lomas, a 29-year-old Ph.D. student at the Human-Computer Interaction Institute at Carnegie Mellon University. “Marvell is doing great things for the future of education by seeding a development community for educational apps.”
The winner of the second-place prize of $30,000 is the application Imagine Mathematics, which illuminates math disciplines like algebra, trigonometry and calculus by taking students behind the scenes and showing them how these disciplines are used in the creation of animated movies from studios like Disney and Pixar. The creator of the app is 36-year-old Seth Piezas, a former technical director at Pixar Animation Studios who now runs his own interactive agency, Colabi.
“I want high school students to see the practical applications of math and the cool things they can create,” said Piezas. “The tablet computer really is an amazing platform for the classroom. I just wish I had something like it when I was a kid.”
The third-place prize of $20,000 goes to Homework Management System, an application that allows students to create quiz questions based on what they have learned in the classroom, which teachers then can distribute to other students for quiz-show style gaming or for homework assignments.
Marvell ARMADA beats Qualcomm Snapdragon, NVIDIA Tegra and Samsung/Apple Hummingbird in the SoC market [again] [Sept 23, 2010 with updates up to Jan 17, 2011] with all SoC product information including background
Analysts about the BRIC market potential
In recent Forrester report (see the Forrester: Global Tech Economy Will Substantially Outgrow The Overall GDP In 2011 [Feb 2] press release copy since on the Forrester’ site it is not more available) the #1 prediction is that:
The Tech economy will substantially outgrow the overall GDP.
with the following details:
The global technology industry is in a multiyear up-cycle of industry innovation and growth, during which tech investment grows faster than overall economic growth. This cycle, which is already under way in the US and other developed countries, is based on adoption of a new generation of Smart Computing and Cloud Computing technologies. We expect this cycle to ensure 7.5% growth in US IT purchases, and 7.1% growth globally (measured in USD), despite economic worries in Europe, uncertainties about the strength of economic recovery in the US, and the potential for slowing growth in China.
… in 2011, Brazil, Russia (sort of), India, and China (BRIC) will see some of the fastest (11%) growth in IT purchases in 2011, with other emerging markets such as South Africa, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Chile, and Mexico seeing similarly strong growth.
The 2011 Accenture Consumer Electronics Products and Services Usage Report which came out under the title “Finding Growth: The Emergence of a New Consumer Computing Paradigm” [Jan 3] has some very significant survey results regarding the BRIC market (in text empasis is mine):
[p. 4, Executive Summary part] A widening enthusiasm gap
The urban consumers in Brazil, Russia, India and China (the BRIC markets) have leapfrogged the average mature market consumer in their use of technology. They have a much greater appetite for consumer technology from many measures, including the devices they own, their purchase plans and their use of applications. Counter to common misperceptions, a large segment of BRIC consumers are more interested in the newest and most innovative technologies than in the lower price point technologies with less functionality. BRIC market consumers have a higher rate of adoption of the newest technologies and a greater willingness to pay premiums for features and enhancements. For instance, a full 84 percent of Indian respondents say they will pay a premium for enhanced smartphone capabilities. That translates into roughly 148 million consumers.
In the BRIC markets, in particular, prospects are bullish for spending on consumer electronics in 2011. This is especially true in China, where this year’s purchasing plans for technologies such as smartphones and high-definition TVs are staggering. Assuming China has an estimated 167 million urban households and an estimated urban population of 434 million people in the consuming age, 38 million high-definition TVs and 63 million smartphones will be purchased there in 2011.
In contrast, mature markets are more conservative and price sensitive. Consumers in the US, Japan, Germany and France have less ambitious plans to purchase new devices in 2011, use fewer applications overall, and are far less willing to pay premiums for new features and enhancements. And, while consumers 55 years or older in mature markets tend to have higher disposable income (and therefore greater ability to spend on technology), they more often wish to spend as little as possible to keep up on the technology adoption curve. In contrast, younger consumers in BRIC markets demonstrate a huge appetite for electronics, but like millennials around the globe, they are often harder to please, less loyal and have less disposable income to spend.
A new consumer technology paradigm
Another benchmark of the new technology paradigm is that as new technologies emerge, consumers are increasingly quick to stop using particular devices if they feel they have the same functionality in another device that performs the same function better—especially in BRIC markets. Twelve percent of consumers surveyed in the BRIC markets stopped using mobile phones in 2010 because they had another device with the same functionality. This compares with only five percent of consumers in mature markets who jettisoned their mobile phones. And, in both mature and emerging markets, younger people appear to be far more willing to let go of duplicative devices.
[p. 5] In summary, in the fast-changing consumer electronics industry, exploiting big growth opportunities is becoming increasingly difficult. Our research helps consumer tech companies with this challenge by offering information on the hottest current and emerging geographic, product and application markets for consumer technology. For instance, the highest spending in 2011 (and we believe for years to come) is projected to be in urban and semiurban BRIC markets. Demand for mobile applications such as banking continues on a strong growth trajectory. And new technologies (such as tablet PCs and e-book readers) and next-generation technologies (such as smartphones, 3-D and Internet-capable TVs) are projecting substantial growth.
[p. 13] Interestingly, one-quarter of respondents globally don’t plan to purchase any consumer technologies in 2011. More than one-third (37 percent) of those 55 and older don’t plan any purchases, compared with only 15 percent of those between 18 and 24 years of age. And a stark contrast in purchasing plans exists between mature and BRIC markets: 40 percent of respondents in mature markets don’t plan to purchase any consumer electronics in 2011, compared with only 9 percent of those in the BRIC markets.
[p. 16] Our study shows that BRIC markets have far greater enthusiasm for technologies and appetite for purchasing them than non-BRIC countries, especially the latest devices such as tablet PCs. One could infer that the lower use of computers in BRIC countries is an indication that these consumers are finding alternate devices to do those activities formerly done on the computer—and may, in fact, have simply leapfrogged the step of owning a computer that those in mature markets had to take because at the time there were no other options.
[p. 24] When reviewing information on “heavy users” of activities—those who do the activity at least five hours per week—interesting patterns emerge. For instance, among millennials in the BRIC markets who are heavy watchers of shows and videos, a larger share (44 percent) watch them on a PC or laptop than on a television (chosen by 30 percent).
… Of those who don’t own an e-book reader, more than half said that it is because they prefer paper books. But 20 percent said they preferred other electronic devices than an e-book reader
for reading books, such as a phone, PC or tablet PC. In emerging markets, the percentage of respondents who prefer other electronic media for e-book reading is much higher: 34 percent in BRIC markets versus 7 percent for mature-market countries.
[p. 34] The tablet PC: The hot consumer electronic
The tablet PC is gaining market momentum. One need only look at the millions of sales of iPads and Galaxy Tab tablet computers since they were each launched in 2010 to know that this device is rapidly becoming popular among consumers.
According to Accenture’s research, 8 percent of consumers surveyed now own a tablet PC and about one-third of those individuals (3 percent total) purchased their tablet PC in 2010 (Figure 21). Eight percent of respondents globally plan to purchase a tablet PC in 2011—a purchase rate that would double tablet PC ownership globally in just one year.
BRIC market consumers are more enthusiastic purchasers of tablet PCs than are mature-market consumers. More than double the percentage of BRIC consumers currently own one, and double the consumers plan to buy one in 2011, than consumers in mature markets. But what is most astounding about tablet PC consumption is that nearly one-quarter of Chinese respondents (across ages within urban areas) currently own one. That is nearly three times the global average. The purchase rate in China was more than double the global average in 2010. And looking forward, China is potentially the strongest market for tablet PCs this year, with 18 percent of Chinese respondents planning to purchase one in 2011. If one does the math, tablet PC ownership would reach almost 40 percent of the urban adult population of China by 2012.
Although far behind China in consumption, India has the second-highest penetration of tablet PCs globally, with 10 percent of consumers owning one. Future growth for tablet PCs in India also looks strong: 10 percent of Indian respondents plan to purchase a tablet PC in 2011. Interestingly, Indian consumers seem less committed to the new technology than other countries. Five percent of those owning a tablet PC quit using it last year because they had the same functionality in another device (globally, the defection rate for tablet PCs was 2 percent).