Flashback: remembering the awesome devices powered by TI OMAP chips

We frequently discuss what number of firms have bowed out of the smartphone race, however the business is tough for element makers as effectively. Nowadays most Androids are powered by both a Qualcomm or a MediaTek chipset. T. can also be the Exynos line from Samsung LSI, however the firm not often finds a consumer outdoors of its sibling Samsung Electronics. Unisoc has carved out a distinct segment for itself and has discovered success.

However we’re not going to speak about any of these as we speak, as a substitute we need to reminisce a couple of chipset maker that referred to as it quits nearly a decade in the past – Texas Devices, “TI” as its associates knew it.

The TI OMAP – Open Multimedia Software Platform – sequence powered among the most influential gadgets over time, smartphones, tablets and even smartwatches.

Let’s begin with Nokia. The Nokia N9 ran MeeGo on a TI OMAP 3630, a 45nm chip with a single Cortex-A8 CPU and a PowerVR SGX530 GPU. We revisited the N9 in a earlier installment w. we remarked how briskly the cellphone felt even in contrast in opposition to the dual-core flagships of the day.

Nokia used OMAP chips in a few of its greatest telephones ever. MeeGo and the N9 hint their historical past again to the Nokia 770 Web Pill (TI OMAP 1710), which ran the Linux-based Maemo. This was adopted by the Nokia N800 in 2007 (TI OMAP 2420) and N810 (2420 once more) with a slide-out QWERTY. This sequence ended with the Nokia N900 (OMAP 3430) in 2009.

Nokia N9
Nokia N800
Nokia N810
Nokia N900

Nokia N9 • Nokia N800 • Nokia N810 • Nokia N900

Going again to 2004, the Nokia 7710 was Nokia first touchscreen gadget and the one one to run Symbian Sequence 90, a TI OMAP 1510 was the chipset of alternative for this gadget (we hesitate to name it a pill, although that’s what it was again then).

Nokia 7710

Nokia 7710

OMAPs have powered many different N-series and E-series gadgets. The multimedia powerhouse that was the Nokia N90 ran on a 1710 chip, the N91 had the same chip and a 4/8 GB microdrive, t. was the oddball N92 too. The Nokia N82 used an OMAP 2420, as did the venerable Nokia N95, arguably the perfect Symbians ever.

Nokia N90
Nokia N91
Nokia N95
Nokia N82

Nokia N90 • Nokia N91 • Nokia N95 • Nokia N82

Nokia’s Communicator sequence was attempting to stage a comeback within the 2000s with gadgets just like the Nokia 9300, 9500 and Nokia E90. The failure of the Nokia N97 and N97 mini put an finish to the Communicator design, nonetheless.

Nokia 9500
Nokia 9300
Nokia E90

Nokia 9500 • Nokia 9300 • Nokia E90

Anyway, Texas Devices chips had been the brains inside different Nokia enterprise telephones too: the E61, E62 and E63.

Nokia E63
Nokia E62
Nokia E61

Nokia E63 • Nokia E62 • Nokia E61

OMAP chips ran many different OSes over time too. The TI OMAP 4460 – nonetheless 45nm, however now with two Cortex-A9 cores and a PowerVR SGX540 GPU – powered the Galaxy Nexus by Samsung, one of many early Google telephones.

Some Galaxy S variants have used OMAPs as effectively, e.g. the Galaxy SL used an OMAP 3630 as a substitute of the Exynos 3 (aka Hummingbird). T. was additionally the I9100G Galaxy S II with a TI chip as a substitute of the Exynos of the common I9100.

Samsung Galaxy Nexus I9250
Samsung I9003 Galaxy SL
Samsung I9100G Galaxy S II

Samsung Galaxy Nexus I9250 • Samsung I9003 Galaxy SL • Samsung I9100G Galaxy S II

Motorola constructed fairly just a few Androids based mostly on a TI OMAP chipset. T. had been the likes of the DROID/MILESTONE, the Android cellphone designed to tackle the iPhone. The TI OMAP 4430 (much like the 4460) was highly effective sufficient for AT&T’s ATRIX 2. As you might recall, ATRIX was a line of telephones that would connect to a laptop computer dock and supply a desktop-like setting lengthy earlier than Samsung’s DeX and Motorola’s new Prepared For.

Motorola DROID X
Motorola RAZR XT910
Motorola ATRIX 2 MB865

Motorola MILESTONE • Motorola DROID X • Motorola RAZR XT910 • Motorola ATRIX 2 MB865

A couple of different Motos that we need to spotlight embrace the Motorola A1000, a Symbian-based PDA/smartphone, the Motorola MPx220, a Home windows Cellular 2003 flip cellphone and not using a touchscreen, the Motorola FlipOut, a kooky cellphone with a QWERTY that rotated out and the rugged Motorola DEFY.

Motorola A1000
Motorola MPx220
Motorola FlipOut
Motorola DEFY

Motorola A1000 • Motorola MPx220 • Motorola FlipOut • Motorola DEFY

We promised TI OMAP-powered smartwatches and . are a pair. Bear in mind the MOTOACTV? It was an early tackle a smartwatch that centered on train monitoring and ran Android 2.3 Gingerbread. T. was additionally the unique Moto 360, Motrola’s first Google Put on watch (nee Android Put on).

Motorola Moto 360 (1st gen)

Motorola MOTOACTV • Motorola Moto 360 (1st gen)

Just like the Nokia N9, we predict that the Palm Pre was one of the influential telephones when it comes to smartphone UI. The Pre 2 additionally used an OMAP chip, whereas the cheaper Pixi ran on a Qualcomm chip.

Palm Pre
Palm Pre 2

Palm Pre • Palm Pre 2

T. are too many telephones to cease and focus on each intimately, however we really feel like we’re not paying sufficient respect to the OMAPs by simply mentioning them often. These chips had been constructed with highly effective ISPs and we will show it.

The Samsung i8910 Omnia HD got here out in mid-2009 and was the primary cell phone that would file and play 720p video. The Sony Ericsson Vivaz was SE’s first cellphone that would seize 720p video and in addition used a TI chip. And so did the Satio (Idou), one of many first 12 MP telephones.

Samsung i8910 Omnia HD
Sony Ericsson Vivaz
Sony Ericsson Satio (Idou)

Samsung i8910 Omnia HD • Sony Ericsson Vivaz • Sony Ericsson Satio (Idou)

We do not know what it was, however the OMAP chips lent themselves to operating varied OSes fairly effectively. We have already lined Linux, Symbian, Home windows Cellular, webOS and Android, now .’s yet another – BlackBerry Pill OS with the Playbook, which shortly morphed into BlackBerry 10 OS. One BlackBerry Z10 used an OMAP chip, although most caught to Snapdragons.

BlackBerry Playbook
BlackBerry Z10

BlackBerry Playbook • BlackBerry Z10

The LG Optimus 3D, one of many first (and fortunately few) smartphones with a 3D show can also be within the TI OMAP camp, its rival, the HTC EVO 3D, featured a Snapdragon S3 as a substitute. A couple of different LGs to say . embrace the trendy Optimus Black P970 and Prada 3.0.

LG Optimus 3D P920
LG Optimus Black P970
LG Optimus Black P970

LG Optimus 3D P920 • LG Optimus Black P970 • LG Optimus Black P970

Amazon began constructing book readers in 2007 to help one in all its core companies (keep in mind, Amazon began as a web based e-book retailer). Later, it branched out into making Android tablets, partially to get into the app retailer enterprise, but in addition to help its streaming service. The unique Amazon Kindle Hearth used a TI OMAP, as did the Hearth HD.

The B&N Nook Coloration pill had an OMAP chip as effectively, even the Nook Easy Contact, one of many few eInk tablets (particularly again within the day). The Kindles and Nooks bought some competitors within the face of the Kobo Arc, one other pill from an organization that branched out from making book readers.

Amazon Kindle Fire
Amazon Kindle Fire HD

Amazon Kindle Hearth • Amazon Kindle Hearth HD

What turned of the Texas Devices OMAP sequence? Properly, in late 2012 t. was a report that the corporate is giving up on smartphones, however TI refuted that declare and mentioned that the OMAP 5 sequence was on the best way. A few OMAP 5 chips did launch – 28 nm, now with two Cortex-A15 cores and a PowerVR SGX544 MP2 GPU – however they had been by no means utilized in a cellphone, pill or related gadget (apart from the DragonBox Pyra, a handheld console/PDA, however we’re unsure that counts).

Which is your favourite TI OMAP-powered cellphone? Would you wish to see a extra detailed Flashback about any of the gadgets talked about above?

PS. In the event you miss Tegra greater than the TI chips, . is the same retrospective. The Nvidia chips have powered their justifiable share of memorable and oddball gadgets too.