Android Runs On Qualcomm's Snapdragon; Google Netbooks Not Far

Semiconductor company Qualcomm has showcased Google's mobile platform, Android, on its Snapdragon architecture, paving the way for a generation of Netbooks that will run on an operating system other than Windows or Linux.

Qualcomm, which is a member of OHA, said that Android would be a very good fit for the Snapdragon range (more specifically the MSM2701A) because of its low power consumption and relatively high processing power.

The platform on display at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas comprised of a 1GHz processor - far faster than those found in smartphones - and 3G connectivity; this could mean that tablets and netbooks based on Android are nearer than most would expect

"Qualcomm's vision for the Snapdragon platform to redefine how people access information is well aligned with the Android platform's capabilities," added Mark Frankel, vice president of product management for Qualcomm CDMA Technologies.

Qualcomm worked with embedded OS specialist Wind River; the latter has disclosed that the company has developed new software code to support Android mobile software at WVGA resolution - that's 800x480, and roughly 2.5x the resolution of touchscreen smartphones like the Palm Pre.

This means that larger screens (7-inch to 12-inch) are not out of question. Qualcomm also said that its silicon will have a much longer battery life, be capable of playing HD video content, support a host of video and audio codecs and have a 12-megapixel camera.

The code, Wind River added, will be provided to the Open Handset Alliance repository as Wind River is a member of OHA.

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Our Comments

2009 is going to be a great year for Android. The G1 was a relatively good smartphone - a first try - but more than 10 companies will be releasing Android-based handsets this year alone including household names like Sony Ericsson, Asus and LG. With Palm resurgence and Apple's current domination of the high end smartphone market, things are getting pretty serious.

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