Pictures of Motorola ‘Olympus’ Powered by NVIDA Tegra 2 Processor Emerge

A tipster sent in a picture to Gizmodo of what they claim is just one of two ‘Olympus’ smartphones Motorola is making. They both will supposedly run on Tegra 2 processors from NVIDA. While a supposed screenshot from the Motorola Olympus MB860 showing its model number and claiming it runs Android 3.0 has turned up, those are easily faked. However, something called the Motorola MB860 has recently gone through Wi-Fi certification so I definitely think the Olympus is real.

Assuming the information from the tipster is correct, Motorola will build two Olympus models. That would go with the rumors of AT&T and Verizon getting one. Even the WSJ has mentioned that Motorola is building a Tegra 2 powered smartphone for Verizon. Something is definitely in the works here.

Why all the hubbub about NIVIDA’s Tegra 2? It is definitely one of the next generation of mobile processors coming out soon. Running a dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 CPU, the processor (chipset technically) clocks in at 1 GHz per core. Combine that with the integrated NVIDA GeForce GPU that was designed for mobile devices and their inherent battery/heat issues and you have a winning combination. The Tegra 2 can also output in 1080p—probably the reason why Acer chose it for its just announced 10.1” Android tablet that will come out in April 2011.

While little else besides the processor chipset inside the Olympus is known right now, the screen is rumored to be around 4” diagonally. This will place it in the lower size range of the growing mobile device category that is half smartphone and half tablet. How much customers like having jumbo-sized phones in their pockets remains to be seen.

I’m excited that that we’re finally seeing a picture of the Motorola Olympus. It’s about time! That this is just one of half a dozen devices that I’ve written about in the past week that will pack dual-core processors is also exciting news. Remember how laptop processor technology eventually found its way back into desktops? We might just be seeing the future of computing being designed for our pockets before it gets scaled up.

Let me know what you think about the Olympus from Motorola. With AT&T and Verizon both as rumored carriers, I expect a lot of these to sell.

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