Allwinner launches quad-core A31s CPU for phablets

Thursday, 28 February 2013

Chinese chip maker Allwinner is launching a new quad-core processor aimed at tablets with 5 to 7 inch displays and cellular capabilities. For reasons that are beyond my control, people seem to like to call these things phablets, and it looks like allwinner wants in on the growing space.
The company’s new Allwinner A31s processor is a lot like the Allwinner A-31 chip that launched recently, but it has extra features designed to support wireless data chips for 2G, 3G, and 4G connectivity, as well as NFC, FM, GPS, WiFi, and Bluetooth.
Allwinner A31s
The Allwinner A31s is a quad-core ARM Cortex-A7 processor with PowerVR SGX 544 graphics and support for 2160p video decoding.
Charbax from ARMDevices caught up with Allwinner at Mobile World Congress this week to talk about the latest chips, and he also got a look at a press release and spec sheet that I haven’t seen online yet.
Those documents may not be entirely accurate — for instance, they say the A31s supports Android 4.2 and Windows 8… but Windows 8 doesn’t run on ARM-based devices. You need Windows RT for that.
So I’m taking some of the specs with a grain of salt, such as the support for devices with 1024 x 768 pixel displays. I have a hard time believing that a quad-core chip with SGX 544 graphics can’t support higher resolutions.
But the spec sheet also mentions support for cameras with 5MP image sensors and support for 1080p output over an HDMI connection, which seems more reasonable.
We should know more about the Allwinner A31s chips by the time they hit the market in March.
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