HTC have something big lurking in the depths of their R&D department. Currently called the HTC Glacier, it’s a smartphone so powerful, its CPU is three times faster than its current fastest phone, the Evo 4G. Rumour has it it’s heading for T-Mobile as part of their mysterious Project Emerald device, details of which are extremely sketchy.
In fact, details are so sketchy, it’s driving the blogosphere nuts! People are reporting that the Glacier is actually the HTC Vision, or maybe the HTC Desire HD or even the T-Mobile G1 Blaze, which at least links in nicely with T-Mobile’s Project Emerald.
Project Emerald, apparently, is a top-secret HTC Desire-like Device that HTC are apparently developing solely for T-Mobile. But it’s so top-secret, that’s all we know!
But as for the HTC Glacier, well we can deduce a few things from the rumours swirling through the mobile phone blogs. Just what can we expect from it? What kind of CPU will it have and what sort of features can we expect from such a fast phone?
Read on to find out!
HTC Glacier’s Processor
Beating at the heart of the HTC Glacier will be a mighty chip. Currently, the fastest smartphone CPUs at the moment are first generation Qualcomm Snapdragon processors, which power the likes of the HTC Desire and HTC HD2.
There are other 1GHz chips out there, notable the Samsung Hummingbird and the Cortex A8, but the Snapdragon was first to market, and has proven especially popular amongst device manufacturers.
The Glacier will not feature a first generation Snapdragon chip, though – its benchmark performance (see below) is too slow. Instead, it’ll feature a second- or even third-generation Snapdragon chip – which, when you see what these beasts are capable of, will make you simply drool!
Qualcomm’s next-gen smartphone chips
The second generation Qualcomm Snapdragon chips are 45nm versions of the first gen chips. This means Qualcomm have been able to ramp the processor speed up from 1GHz to 1.3GHz, reduced the power requirements (thereby extending battery life), improve overall speed by a third, and doubled the graphics performance.
Which is pretty sweet! The second gen chips are currently being tested by Qualcomm now, manufacturers have early samples of the chip already and we should see devices using the chip in a few months’ time.
But it’s the third generation Snapdragon that really captures the imagination, especially when the rumours insist that it’s this that’ll be at the heart of the HTC Glacier.
Is the third generation Snapdragon powering the HTC Glacier?
The third generation Qualcomm Snapdragon chip will be dual-core 45nm processor running at 1.2GHz. A dual-core chip – two processors instead of one – running inside a mobile phone! That’s nuts! Gloriously, blisteringly speedily nuts!
Qualcomm have also given the thrid gen Snapdragon HSPA and EVDO modems, 1080p playback and recording, superior audio processing, and the power to process 88 million triangles per second for some seriously heavy duty 3D games processing (the Sony PSP, by comparison, only pushes 33 million).
Now if that doesn’t make you drool, nothing will!
So what is the HTC Glacier?
Of course, all of this at the moment is simply rumours being tied to rumours. It’s clear that HTC has a prodcut called the Glacier that’s three times faster than the HTC Evo, itself a Snapdragon-based device that’s already super-fast.
It’s also clear that T-Mobile has something called Project Emerald, and that it’s T-Mobile testing the HTC Glacier.
Finally, as you can see from the video below, the performance and specs of the third gen Qualcomm Snapdragon are not only real, they’re out of this world.
Whether this is the chip powering the HTC Glacier, and whether the Glacier is Project Emerald, well, that’s where the evidence is less clear.
Whatever the truth, the Glacier is coming, andwill be blisteringly quick…and I really want one!
The future – here now!
The benchmark above shows the HTC Glacier running at 1432 frames per second, which is three times faster than the HTC Evo 4G. Interestingly, this is 1.4 times faster than the Apple iPhone 4, which is impressive in itself, but on a par with the Samsung Vibrant – also known as the Samsung Galaxy S, and which is running Samsung’s own Hummingbird processor clocked at 1GHz.
So the newer Qualcomm Snapdragon chips are pretty tasty, but it looks like Samsung’s Hummingbird chips are just as good! The next gen smartphones that are now on the horizon are going to be absolute screamers! This Christmas and early 2011 will see some truly astonishing smartphones