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Quick First Look: Lenovo and Intel’s Medfield Android Phone

The Intel booth marked one of our last stops here at CES 2012, and what better way to start wrapping things up than by looking at one of the future chipsets you will see in Android phones this year. It’s called Intel’s “Medfield” processor and is a single-core chip clocked at 1.6GHz. Don’t let the single-core part throw you though, so far from some of the benchmarks we have seen around the interwebs, this thing looks powerful enough.

For demo and display purposes, they slapped it into a Lenovo casing that may or may not ever see the light of day here in the States. The device itself ran Android 2.3 and had an 8MP camera that Intel’s chip was able to use to shoot up to 15 pictures within a single second. It also ran some of the more processor intensive games on the market without a hiccup.

We listened and watched a live demo of the device for a few minutes, but then quickly grabbed it to see how it performed. What did we think? Tough to have any strong opinions on it since this was really just a dev device, but the design that Lenovo went with was decent. The fact that the camera can take burst shots in a single second is a bonus, along with the fact that this processor is supposed to use far less energy than some of its competitors.

Pics after the break, including details on Medfield.  

Quick reference guide:

What do you guys think? Excited for Intel to enter the Android game?

  • Shaffer897

    Ya can’t wait for motos future phones.Intel processors great thing

  • “along with the fact that this processor is supposed to use far less energy than some of its competitors.” – Actually Intel’s own slides show the comparision is a wash. Medfield uses less energy in some cases and more in others. Where it really shines is browsing and graphics performance, which explains what you saw with the games at CES http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/news/2012/01/will-medfield-be-the-chip-intel-needs-to-take-on-arm.ars

  • Jim Davis

    I’m pretty meh about medfield. Ars technica has an article about medfield on their site that essentially says intel has a lot of catching up to do.

  • Drinksprite

    look at all that space the screen coulda been using up

  • Azturbomini

    Believe me Intel knows what they are doing and what direction to take. They are currently building Fab 42 here in AZ with a cost of 1.6 billion dollars to do so.

  • RabRabRab

    Who else now thinks its very probable that with the acquisition of motorola by google and motorola announcing they’re teaming up with intel that we could see a jelly bean nexus made by motorola with an intel chipset?

    • Blood


  • Normally, 1 core = 1 thread. However, that is not a necessity, and there are ways to run multiple threads on one core. This is essentially what Intel Hyper-Threading (R) is. This processor would then perform just as a dual-core processor would (except at a higher clock speed, it would seem). This is the same we have seen with the new i7s (4 core multithreaded processor that outperforms AMD’s 8 core processor).

    • I was going to say this, thanks for saving me the typing

    • Ed

      This is true             but the new AMD bulldozer does have hyper threading (I dont remember the official name) but windows does not know how to use them and they are working on a patch to improve performance.

      • That’s probably true. I have not looked at the specs for the bulldozer, so it very well may be. Although I also have never heard of AMD doing multithreading (they have “Turbo boost”, but that’s a completely different thing).

        Anyway, theoretically, any processor can be multitreaded (although for most of them, it is not worth it — the architecture has to be designed for it, or you won’t see any performance boost). Intel, however, has unparalleled support for it.

      • magnimus1
    • I agree with you.

  • I would have no problem going back to single core if it competes with Dual cores. Then again I don’t think Intel would put a single core out there if it couldn’t compete with the rest of the market.

  • Anonymous

    Wow. I’m now convinced that a Jelly Bean Google Intel Nexus phone with a large OLED Gorilla Glass 2 screen would equal the (second coming of Christ)².

  • Why the hell is a task killer on there!? Smh..

    • Quick way to kill running apps. I have ATK installed, too. It’s fine as long as you disable auto-killing.

      • Billyrouth2000

        Android does not need task killers,

        • Anonymous

          Lonnie is right on both counts. ATK is an excellent alternative to going through android’s native task killing ability when you get a process that’s hung up and unresponsive (not many people like going through 4 menus to kill a task). ATK allows you to do it in 2 seconds. disable ATK’s auto kill feature and its a useful tool to keep on your phone when you need to quickly kill something.

  • Eazy

    since droid life has forgotten its roots, i would like to share a rom with all nexus users that i think is awesome http://www.galaxynexusforum.com/forum/galaxy-nexus-roms-lte-cdma/1126-rom-axi0m-v2-4-apex-v5-kernel-1-6-2012-a.html i take no credit of course and enjoy

    • Anonymous

      They’re at CES this week, I wouldn’t expect much ROM news until they get back. Before that, there was some ROM news but mostly not because a lot of the bugs were still being worked out.

      If they recommended a ROM and it was full of bugs, people would flip the f out and never stop complaining.

      • Eazy

        i know that i meant even before that there are tons of roms …and whatever happened to custom theme friday, or thursday…im just saying they used to do a lot more modding . i dont know how long you have been following this site, but i have been here since the beginning and trust me they have changed a lot some good and some bad

        • Granted

          Damn straight they have! His comment isn’t indicative of where they are this week, the sliding has been going on for a hell of a long time. When was the last time you saw a new, bright and shiny, awesome, live wallpaper of a new Droid Eye posted up got download? Those used to be every week along with a bunch more goodies. Now it’s phucking QVC non-stop pandering. “YOU don’t have to come here!”. You don’t have to eat my dingleberries, but yet I’m constantly propositioned to have whoever says this, have you ask to scarf my man meat. And the Leprechaun movies were awesome and hilarious too, except he didn’t decapitate Courtney Cox in the movie and sadly real life, saving us from the atrocity that was “Friends”. Mypentile is so much bigger than your Rom hole.

          • Eazy

            Yeah this site has definitely gone on a downward trend …not that its entirely their fault . Now this site is the home of Android phone bashing. I mean if they need more writers I’ll post on this site roms and themes myself for free of course since Android is supposed to be all about open source

        • Anonymous

          I know what you mean in here. I think the main thing that happened was it turned into a full time job. It’s gotten to the point here where they need someone full time to test and review applications. They did have someone doing that but everyone bitched in the comments about his articles. I’m not sure if he quit because of that or if his school started taking up more time.

    • Anonymous

      Yeah, Axiom was an awesome rom. Too bad the dev abandoned ship and will probably never release another update.

  • Anonymous

    Getting excited after reading this. Wasn’t really before because I hadn’t taken the time to read anything about them. I just figured it was Intel trying to capitalize on one of the few markets they aren’t involved in already. It looks like they might have brought the A game with this one though. Still, “Intel graphics accelerator” is never exciting to read.

    Even though it is a demo unit, that shell looks pretty good IMO. Super thin too.

  • Intel HAS to get into this market and fast otherwise they will have the same story as other large companies that failed to adapt to changing tech environment. (RIM, Palm, HP?) More day-to-day devices will have a mobile aspect and Intel has maybe 1% market share globally (counting tablets). They need to advance quickly into phones, tablets and any other gimmicky mobile tech because Desktops are being used less and less and thin-clients, notebooks, tablets, and phones are where things are heading quickly. 

  • 4geez

    remember how apple computers sucked until they got Intel processors?

    I hope this is the case with Android.

    • Anonymous

      Ironically, they were using Motorola processors. 

      • Anonymous


      • Anonymous

        Then IBM Power PC processors.

        • Anonymous

          Power PC was a joint group of Motorola, IBM and Apple.

          Currently, the Cell processor has come from that lineage.

          • Anonymous

            What I meant was originally Apple went from Motorola Power PC to IBM Power PC and then jumped to Intel. Not a direct jump from Motorola to Intel.
            As history would show Motorola split its semiconductor manufacturing division into On-Semiconductor and then it was spun as Freescale Semiconductor. 

    • Ed

      I would like to inform you that powerpc processor were quite powerful and the problem was they generated to much heat, the PS3, xbox 360 and wii use powerpc processors for a reason

      • lostsync

        PPC had a lot to do with Apple’s success in the media arts fields. There’s a reason Apple was able to sell PowerBook G4s at 1500$/ea for over 2 years after switching the desktops to G5s and most of it had to do with how capable the PowerPC chips were.

  • Therobotcow

    i hope the next nexus comes with a nice and powerful intel cpu(and heads over to vzw of course).
    Its amazing how quickly smartphones are becoming, its outstanding!

  • Dan


  • Intel is gonna start romping around once they get settled in. This should get real interesting once my next upgrade is up in a year 1/2

  • Potacho

    If Verizon doesn’t carry any Google phones anymore in the future, I think I’ll go with Intel phones.

    • Google and Intel are both in this phone.

      • andrew z

        No. Google and Intel are located in California.

        This phone is clearly in Las Vegas.

    • Stephen Partington

      Intel is running Android… 

    • Anonymous

      Sigh. He means the Google Nexus line.

    • PyroHoltz

      This comment hurts my brain.

    • Anonymous

      Nexus inside Google Intel

      • Anonymous

        Peanut butter

      • Anonymous


    • Anonymous

      Can you explain?

  • Jtz

    Phone with hyper threading, and so it begins 🙂