Let me be the first to admit that not everything in my last rumor report came true, but it was pretty darn close. Google unveiled their web-based Android Market and we heard that the music store is finished, but legal wrangling is still holding it up. Today we received another hot tip on HTC’s next big Android phone and I’ve confirmed it with several sources so check out the details after the jump.
HTC’s first dual-core Android smartphone is codenamed Pyramid. It features a dual-core 1.2 GHz Snapdragon processor (MSM8260), 4.3 inch qHD display, and support for HSPA+ networks. T-Mobile has picked up the phone and their target release date is May 2011.
This tip came from another regular source who has provided accurate information about several Android announcements in the past. A new, separate source also corroborated the information. As with most people that hand over sensitive information, they wish to remain anonymous.
One Android Insider’s take on the rumor
Is this really a surprise to anyone? We have known for a long time that Qualcomm was working on a dual-core Snapdragon, but the exact timing has been uncertain.
Qualcomm demoed their dual-core MSM8x60 development platform during CES and hinted at an early Q2 availability, so a May 2011 product release is totally plausible.
We expect HTC will show off their new dual-core devices during Mobile World Congress later this month, but I doubt they will make any U.S. product announcements. Those are likely slated for CTIA in March, so again it makes sense that these devices should arrive on U.S. carriers by May.
T-Mobile and HTC have a very strong relationship, maybe the strongest out of all the U.S. carriers. T-Mobile worked with HTC on the G1, supported the Nexus One, and chose them to produce their myTouch line of phones.
Everyone has been screaming for a 4.3-inch Android phone on T-Mobile and their cries have finally been answered. It’s interesting to see that HTC is also going with a qHD display and I assume it has a 960×540 resolution since that is what Motorola is using. We don’t know who will provide the display for HTC, but they have a record of working with multiple companies so it could be anyone.
A quick look at Qualcomm’s Snapdragon page gives us an idea of what to expect from the dual-core 1.2 GHz Snapdragon MSM8260.
Features of the MSM8x60 include:
- Scorpion asynchronous dual-CPU cores, up to 1.2GHz for faster response and processing
- Integrated 3G mobile broadband connectivity
- MSM8260 support for HSPA+ networks — up to 14 Mbps downloads and 5.6 Mbps uploads — as well as GSM, GPRSand EDGE
- MSM8660 support for HSPA+ networks — up to 14.4 Mbps downloads and 5.76 Mbps — as well as CDMA2000 1X, 1xEV-DO Rel A/B, GSM, GPRS and EDGE
- Low-power 45nm process technology for higher integration and performance
- High-definition (1080p) video recording and playback up to 30 frames per second
- Multiple video codecs: (MPEG-4, MPEG-2, H.264, H.263, VC-1, DivX, WMV-9, Sorenson Spark, VP6)
- High-performance GPU — up to 88M triangles/sec and 532M 3D pixels/sec and dedicated 3D/2D acceleration engines for Open GLES 2.0 and Open VG 1.1 acceleration
- High-resolution WXGA (1280×800) display support
- 16-megapixel camera support
- Built-in eighth-generation gps engine with Standalone-GPS and Assisted-GPS modes
- Support for Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity
- Multiple audio codecs: (AAC+, eAAC+, AMR, FR, EFR, HR, WB-AMR, G.729a, G.711, AAC stereo encode)
- Support for mobile broadcast TV (MediaFLO, DVB-H and ISDB-T)
- Support for Android, Brew Mobile Platform and Windows Phone
Not all of those features will make it into the HTC Pyramid, but you can bet that it will do 1080p video record and playback. We also know it will feature the Adreno 220 GPU, which should be very competitive with NVIDIA’s GeForce GPU.
Overall, I’m pretty pumped to see how this device plays out. Just because T-Mobile is picking up the Pyramid, that doesn’t mean they will have an exclusive. It is very likely that Pyramid is just HTC’s reference design for their first dual-core phone and it could make it multiple carriers. For all we know, the Pyramid could eventually become the EVO 2.
We would love to bring you some pictures of the Pyramid, but none of the recently leaked HTC phones match its description. Hopefully by posting this rumor report, it will motivate someone to dig out the blurrycam and send in a few shots…
Update: David of TmoNews has also heard from his sources that Pyramid is coming to T-Mobile. He mentions a late Q2 launch date, which is within the same window that I have heard.