LG’s Optimus 4X HD has begun its rollout in key European countries. The new Android smartphone was unveiled at the Mobile World Congress in February and arrives hot on the heels of quad-core competitors the HTC One X and Samsung Galaxy S3 (or at least its white version, the delayed blue S3 is now due in the last week of June).
German customers get their hands on the Optimus 4X HD first, with the UK due to follow suit imminently. The German price for a SIM-free handset is about €500, equivalent to just over £400, though a few UK online retailers have started listing the model for between £449 and £499. Contract pricing is yet to be announced.
The Optimus 4X HD has an Nvidia Tegra 3 processor, Android 4.0, 2150mAh battery (newly upgraded with LG’s SiO battery ehnacing technology), a 4.7-inch True HD IPS display and a Quick Memo feature embedded in its operating system, so you can make or share notes from within any application.
The Tegra 3 processor is a “4-PLUS-1” quad-core chip. At peak performance it will use its four main cores but in standby it switches to a fifth one for power management purposes. LG says it plans a special Eco Mode for the 4X HD in a later firmware upgrade so that users can manually shut down individual cores for fine control over power consumption.
Amid all this quad-core action, Nvidia’s rival chip-maker Intel recently cast doubt on Android’s current suitability for running on multi-core processors. According to The Inquirer, Intel believes system-on-chip (SoC) vendors have not done enough to optimise Android for dual and quad-core technology, and that in some circumstances multiple cores can even be detrimental.
The site quotes Intel’s Mike Bell, who said, “I've taken a look at the multiple core implementations in the market, and frankly, in a thermal and/or power constrained environment – what has been implemented – it isn't obvious to me you really get the advantage for the size and the cost of what's going into that part.”
He added, “The way it's implemented right now, Android does not make as effective use of multiple cores as it could, and I think – frankly – some of this work could be done by the vendors who create the SoCs, but they just haven't bothered to do it."
Via The Inquirer