30 May 2006
First Nokia Phone with HW Accelerated 3D Graphics
We have already spotted that Nokia N93 is the first Nokia phone with HW accelerated 3D graphics and OpenGL ES (1.1) support.
As the real freaks we have been very curious about this new and exciting technology and after some research we have found that N93 uses PowerVR MBX 2D/3D graphics accelerator from Imagination Technology incorporated into Texas Instrument’s OMAP2420 together with the fully programmable VGP vertex processor core, FPU (floating point unit) and ARM11 processor.
Although Nokia N93 isn’t the only Symbian phone that uses this technology, it seams that Sony Ericsson P990 as well as M600 or W950i (the UIQ 3, Symbian 9.1 based phones) uses the light version of the same IT’s GPU altogether with ARM9 processor packed in the Philips Nexperia PNX4008 chip, but the sad fact is that the configuration its quite inferior to the TI’s OMAP2420.
If you take a closer look at the Benchmark test result you’ll see that it’s more than obvious that above specifications puts N93 to the poll position as the fastest Smart phone at the moment.
Finally, as far as I know an HTC also produced cell phone with 3D hardware; the HTC Forseer DVB-H TV phone, runs on Windows Mobile 5.0 and uses the NVIDIA GoForce 5500 GPU same as Samsung’s
Here are the latest
MBX demo videos
The only bad aspect of PowerVR MBX GPU is the fact that it supports only DVD like video (640*480 up to 30fps) while the GoForce 5500 provide better video decoding/encoding, GoForce GPUs are capable for real DVD video (720*480 at 30fps or 720*576 at 25fps) encoding that delivering smooth, jitter-free, high-quality video.
Last but not least, ATI Technologies Inc. and Nokia announced a long-term strategic relationship to bring enhanced mobile multimedia experiences to Nokia customers. As leaders in their respective industries, ATI and Nokia are now working closely together to drive high quality multimedia experiences such as music playback, 3D gaming, mobile TV, video and more for Nokia mobile device users worldwide.
I just hope that this means that from the N93 successor we can expect ~3” VGA screen with superior 3D graphic and real DVD quality video encoding ;)
Yeah I know, maybe I am too optimistic, but considering mentioned collaboration with ATI altogether with already established cooperation with Texas Instruments and upcoming ARM cortex 8 processors; that’s what we can at least expect from the future multimedia computers.
Imagination Technologies PowerVR MBX Drives Console Class Mobile 3D Gaming on the TI OMAP 2
Texas Instrument’s OMAP2420 incorporates the PowerVR MBX 2D/3D graphics core and fully programmable VGP vertex processor core licensed by TI from Imagination Technologies.
With the high end PC market secured by ATI and NVIDIA, PowerVR is now concentrating on the portable market with its latest design, the low power PowerVR MBX which has become the de facto standard for mobile 3D, having been licensed by six of the top ten semiconductor manufacturers including Intel, Texas Instruments, Samsung, Philips, Freescale, Renesas, and Sunplus.
PowerVR MBX, the leading mobile graphics acceleration solution, offers full acceleration for OpenVG, achieving many times the performance of software implementations with significantly reduced power consumption.
OpenVG is an industry-standard, cross-platform API that provides a low-level hardware acceleration interface for vector graphics libraries such as SVG. OpenVG is targeted at handheld devices that require portable acceleration of high-quality vector graphics for compelling user interfaces and text on small screen devices.
The PowerVR gaming platform delivers the performance needed to port console class games onto today's mobile handsets, delivering massive triangle and fill rates along with full 3D features exceeding the OpenGL ES 1.x (PowerVR MBX) and 2.x (PowerVR SGX) standards.
Says Peter McGuinness, director of business development, Imagination Technologies: “PowerVR MBX is a significant step forward for mobile graphics and the de facto standard today. We are delighted that at GDC 2006 we will bring to visitors demonstrations of the latest advanced 3D content from our PowerVR Insider partners.
We value our relationships with leading 3D games and middleware developers and proactively support them in the creation of PowerVR-optimised titles for mobile, handheld, PC, and arcade platforms.”
PowerVR Insiders don’t just get access to the highest performance, most widely available gaming platform targeting the most content-capable new 3D handsets. They also get the tools and support required to create or port their content and PowerVR will continue to push the boundaries of features and performance so that games will always look better and play better on a PowerVR platform.
PowerVR’s personalised developer program puts developers directly in touch with PowerVR engineers and makes sure they have the resources needed to produce leading-edge content.
The PowerVR SDK includes all the tools, technical documentation, white papers, problem solving tips and tricks, FAQs, and sample programs required to enable advanced mobile 3D.
The PowerVR SDK is available now for OpenGL 1.x for desktop PC (Emulation), Pocket PC (Dell Axim X50v), WinCE 5 (Dell Axim X51v), ARM Versatile Platform (Linux & Symbian), Texas Instruments' OMAP2420/2430 (Linux & Symbian), Freescale iMX31 (Linux).
Developers wishing to target any PowerVR enabled processors can write their 3D code using OpenGL ES on PCs with the PC Emulation SDK, which will allow content to port directly onto their target platforms. For more information see: www.pvrdev.com. The PowerVR MBX family of off-the-shelf 3D, 2D and video acceleration cores includes:
MBX Pro for very high-performance applications such as Internet Appliance (IA) devices and HDTV resolution media gateways or set-top boxes.
MBX for incredible performance handheld devices and mid-range Internet Appliance (IA) solutions. MBX Lite for power-critical cost-sensitive mobile applications.
PowerVR cores are designed for scalability, efficiency and reusability. The cores are designed to be complementary within a SoC framework and support a range of configurable functionality to allow designers to achieve the optimum SoC solution. PowerVR's video cores support anything from MPEG-4 or WMV video decode acceleration, through full MPEG-2 decode of SDTV to multi-stream decode of HDTV broadcasts. These combine with display solutions that offer high quality video scaling, overlay and blending support with advanced techniques for both interlace-to-progressive (I2P) video conversion and interlace output with flicker filtering. The video and display cores also combine to minimize system bandwidth requirements.
About Imagination Technologies
Imagination Technologies Group plc – a leader in SoC IP – develops, licenses and supplies market-leading graphics, video and display cores, real-time multi-threaded DSP/RISC processors and communication and broadcast technologies for the mobile, consumer, automotive and PC markets. It supplies licensable IP (Intellectual Property) supported by advanced development tools to leading semiconductor and consumer electronics companiesworldwide. Imagination Technologies Group plc has its corporate headquarters in the United Kingdom and is publicly traded on the London Stock Exchange (FTSE:IMG).
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