MediaTek is already one of the world’s top smartphone chip makers, with a range of products for budget, mid-range, and flagship devices. But you don’t see a lot of flagships in the North American market sporting MediaTek processors.
Maybe that’ll change now that MediaTek has unveiled its first processor with support for mmWave 5G networks. Phones powered by the new MediaTek Dimensity 1050 processor are expected to ship in the third quarter of 2022.
The processor is a 6nm chip with:
- 2 x ARM Cortex-A78 CPU cores @ 2.5 GHz
- 6 x ARM Cortex-A55 CPU cores @ 2 GHz
- 6 x ARM Cortex
- Mali-G610 MC3 graphics
- mmWave 5G support with 4CC carrier aggregation
- Sub-6 GHz 5G support with 3CC carrier aggregation
- WiFi 6E
- Bluetooth 5.2
MediaTek also says the chip supports LPDDR4X or LPDDR5 memory, UFS 2.1 or UFS 3.1 storage, support for up to a 144 Hz, 2520 x 1080 pixel display, up to a 108MP camera (or dual 20MP cameras), and support for recording up to two HDR videos simultaneously.
But it’s the 5G capabilities that really set the Dimensity 1050 apart from MediaTek’s other recent flagship processors. It supports peak download speeds up to 4.6 Gbps, and can seamlessly switch between sub-6GHz and mmWave networks on the fly.
That’s not a feature that matters much in most of the world, where mmWave networks haven’t been deployed. And to be honest, it’s probably not that important in the US either, where most users rarely connect to mmWave networks even if they have a phone and wireless carrier that supports the technology. But it could become a more important feature as networks continue to expand mmWave coverage, and it would make sense for phone makers to tout support for mmWave as a selling point for higher-priced devices.
MediaTek has also unveiled two other new mobile chips. The Dimensity 930 is a 6nm processor with two ARM Cortex-A78 CPU cores @ 2.2 GHz, 6 ARM Cortex-A55 cores @ 2 GHz, Imagination BXM-8-256 graphics, WiFi 5, Bluetooth 5.2, support for up to a 2520 x 1080 pixel 120Hz display and up to a 108MP camera. It supports sub-6GHz 5G networks. Phones with this chip should begin shipping within the next month or two.
The new Helio G99 processor, meanwhile, is a 6nm chip for 4G phones with an emphasis on gaming for mid-range phones. It has two ARM Cortex-A76 cores @ 2.2 GHz and six Cortex-A55 cores @ 2 GHz, and ARM Mali-G57 MC2 graphics. It can support up to a 120 Hz, 2520 x 1080 pixel display and 108MP camera, but with memory and storage topping out at LPDDR4X and UFS 2.2, respectively, this chip clearly isn’t in the same class as the new Dimensity processors. Phones with MediaTek Helio G99 chips should begin shipping in Q3, 2022.