Intel CEO shows first Moorestown smartphone

The LG990 from LG Electronics will ship in the second half

Intel on Thursday showed the first smartphone based on its upcoming Moorestown platform for mobile devices.

The GW990 smartphone will be made by LG Electronics and ship during the second half of the year, said Intel CEO Paul Otellini during a keynote speech at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. This is the first device launched that is based on Moorestown, a chip platform with an Atom-based processor that Intel is targeting at smartphones and mobile Internet devices.

The smartphone has a 5-inch screen that can play back 720p high-definition video. The screen supports multitouch input and includes a camera in the front and back. The phone runs the Linux-based Moblin OS.

LG last year said it adopted the Moorestown platform for a device, though it didn't provide further details. Other device makers such as Nokia have adopted the Moorestown platform, but have not announced products.

The smartphone will be capable of running multiple applications at once. During an on-stage demonstration, the phone played high-definition video and ran a calendar application at the same time. Applications like multipoint videoconferencing will also be possible through the device.

The Moorestown platform draws up to half the power in active usage mode and up to 50 times less power in idle mode compared to its predecessors, the company has said.

The platform includes a power-efficient version of the Atom processor, code-named Lincroft, which is paired with a chipset called Langwell. Intel describes Lincroft as a system-on-chip (SoC) with a 3D graphics accelerator, integrated memory controller and other components on a single chip.

Moorestown provides the computing power needed to bring PC functions to smartphones, Otellini said. Moorestown is a follow-up to the current Menlow platform, which goes into products such as mobile Internet devices.

"It's smaller, faster and better than anything we've done before," Otellini said.

Atom chips were originally introduced in 2008, and were instrumental in spawning a new category of devices called netbooks. During the keynote, Otellini also announced the first download store for netbook applications, called AppUp Center beta, which is part of the Atom developer program.

PC makers including Acer, Asus, Dell and Samsung are committed to building storefronts based on AppUp Center, Otellini said. Such storefronts could be rolled out by the end of the quarter and will be accessible through the PC makers' netbooks.

The netbook application developer program has won wide support, Otellini said. The program has close to 3,000 members and the software development kit has been downloaded 25,000 times.

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