February 16, 2009, 8:54 AM — Intel is expected to announce on Monday that LG Electronics will include its highly anticipated mobile chip in a handheld device designed for Internet access.
LG will use a low-power integrated chip from Intel's Moorestown platform in a mobile Internet device (MID) it plans to release in the future. MIDs are handheld communication and Internet devices that fall somewhere between a sub-notebook and a smartphone.
LG didn't immediately provide a release date for the product, but Intel's Moorestown chip platform is due for release in 2010. The announcement is expected to be made at the GSMA Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona.
Intel and LG's goal is to "unleash rich Internet experiences across a range of mobile devices while delivering the functionality of today's high-end smart phones," the companies said in a joint press release. LG is also working with Ericsson to bring 3G network capability to the planned MID.
This is a big design win for Intel, which is trying to get its feet wet in a mobile device market dominated by processors designed by rival Arm. LG was the world's third-largest mobile-phone distributor in 2008, according to IDC. The company shipped 100.7 million mobile phones, behind Nokia, which shipped 468.4 million phones, and Samsung, which shipped 196.7 million phones.
Last year Intel introduced specific Atom processors -- code-named Menlow -- for MIDs, but handset makers adopting the chips have expressed concerns about their poor battery life. Instead those chips are now being used by PC makers in netbooks -- small laptops designed for Internet access -- as the line blurs between the smartphone and netbook categories.
Intel hopes to fix Menlow's ills with the upcoming Moorestown platform, which the company said will consume up to 10 times less power when devices are in idle mode.
The Moorestown platform consists of a system-on-chip built around the Atom processor core, and the Langwell chipset, as well as modules for mobile broadband network access.
LG is already shipping netbooks and laptops with Intel processors.