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MediaTek’s New Helio X10 Chip Already Supports Chrome OS

MediaTek tileTaiwanese processor company MediaTek has said it wants its chips to power future Chromebook, news sure to surprise no one who follows Chromebook developments closely.

Speaking with a number of press outlets at Mobile World Congress in Spain, MediaTek VP and CTO Kevin Jou also revealed that its brand new high-performance Helio X10 chip already supports Chrome OS.

We reported last year how the company had pushed code for a development board using the low cost and low performance MT8127 chipset to the Chromium repository, signalling that a possible ‘dirt cheap’ Chromebook was in the works.

Fast forward 6 months and MediaTek’s hope of Chromebooks powered by the new Helio X10 SoC is easily ten times more exciting.

Helio X10, Hello Performance

Unveiled at MWC, the Helio X10 processor is, as noted by PCWorld and others at MediaTek’s pre-MWC presser, powerful. It would certainly leave the current generation of ARM Chromebooks, so often criticised for sluggish performance, in the shade without impacting on the long battery life such models enjoy.

The 64-bit eight-core Helio X10 is said to be able to encode and decode 4K video streams at 30 frames per second, drive high-resolution displays at 120Hz refresh rates, and provide performance on par with the super-fast Snapdragon 810 mobile processor.

Like Samsung’s Exynos Octa chip, which powers earlier versions of the Samsung Chromebook 2, the Helio X10 is an eight-core processor. It combines four performance-orientated cores with four low-powered (i.e., battery efficient) cores that handle less intensive computing tasks, like playing music in the background, loading a website, or Facebook chats.

For now, or at least until MWC2015 kicks off proper, Jou’s tease is all we’re getting. We’ll be keeping an eye on Chromium Code and development boards a little more closely from hereon in. We’ll let you know as soon as we find something.

Would you like to see ARM Chromebooks become more powerful? Do you own one? Are you content with the current performance? Let us know your thoughts in the comments space below. It’s what it’s there for, after all! ;) 

  • Christopher Woodhouse

    I had an ARM powered Samsung Chromebook (until a tragic spill on the keyboard sent it to the netherworld) and I loved it. For most tasks even with it’s now ancient dual core 1.7gh was able to power through most of what I needed with little delay. Some of my friends Tegra K1 Chromebooks, and unless you do those stupid tests where you have 20 windows open and run music an HD at the same time (why in real ife would you do that?) they work very well (I’m told). This could be a really good thing for Chrome.

    • wilfried peeters

      You are so right, and when using more tabs i use the one tab extension, works fine !

  • Mehmed

    İ have a Samsung Chromebook with Exynos 5250, 32nm/1,7 GHz dual core and it’s too slow for me. A 14nm cortex a72 with 2,4 GHz would be great. That would be enough power I think.
    Ah and a Mali t880 mp8
    My Mali t604 mp4 really is not powerful enough.

    • Exynos5250 is 2012 ARM Chromebook performance, get a newer one. My Tegra K1 Chromebook performance is pretty great.

  • Guest

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  • Ian

    The biggest thing I have issues with running my ARM chromebook is when I have mutiple intesive web apps open. Typically I have Gcal, gmail, keep, spotify, and the onedrive open. That in itself is enough to slow down the poor ARM processor on my samsung :(

    • Gmail makes mine grind to a halt, so you’re not alone.

      • It depends which ARM Chromebook you have. The first generation ARM Chromebook was released in 2012, so people shouldn’t be using that as a benchmark for performance, that was was faster than the 2012 Intel Atom/Celeron Chromebook.

  • Nathan Fletcher

    Seeing that most of the people here seem to own a chromebook, I must ask. When I have multiple pages open, sometimes they will freeze in the middle of using them for a couple of seconds, up to around thirty seconds for no apparent reason. This is on an acer c720 in just the stock version. Is this a ram issue or what, because I don’t see why it should be having a ram issue when it is not switching pages and just has the main page that I am on loaded into the memory. I just find this issue to be annoying because usually I want to have in the range of 30+ pages loaded on my chromebook, but am really only actively using like three of them. The rest are just for news articles and other sources that I most likely use throughout the day, but have no use for them being loaded into system ram, just onto a page file on the ssd.

    Secondly, has anyone had an issue while printing off documents through google docs when the document has a header. Whenever I try to print a document that has a header, I always have issues with the header being cut off for no apparent reason. This makes it challenging when you are typing college papers that require a header to be on the top of the paper. This is being done through google cloud print and sent to a dedicated server for the printer. Any ideas would be great. Thanks!

    • numbere

      I have the same issue when printing physics labs containing headers and formulas. A simple fix is while in google docs save your document to downloads as a pdf. Printing the document as a pdf will keep the original format.

  • Better and faster, sure. Why not? However as long as the ARM Chromebooks continue to be the same price as the Intel spec’d Chromebooks I would always choose the Intel ones instead. ARM is nice but unfortunately from my experience the Intel hardware has just been able to handle more without sacrificing that much in terms to battery life.

    • New ARM Rockchip Chromebooks start below $150 retail price, may approach sub-$100 before the end of the year.

  • aaphid

    Sounds great but didn’t we have a similar story last year about the Rockchip? It too promised super cheap, fast Chromebooks but then they went quiet.

    • They’re here. Optimizing for Chrome OS is not a piece of cake. Chrome OS is a full desktop-performance platform, switching between many desktop view tabs full of javascripts, flash, extensions, video chats etc is important.

    • Xiaomi Redmi Note 2. ;)

  • Guest

    Previous payment i got was 5k Dollars for Working twelve hrs weekly for freelancing over internet at home. My sister has a friend who ‘s been averaging 11000 dollars for months now AnD She Works for about twenty Hours Weekly. I couldn’t beleive how easy it was after I tried it. The Sky is limit here… This is what I am doing>
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  • ChrisGX

    What a confusing introduction to a possibly trivial rebranding program the WMC 2015 Mediatek press conference was. The new chip announced there, the MT 8173 (note the older model branding format!) which many commentators reckon to be the new X10 chip doesn’t even have many of the defining features that Mediatek themselves set out in a short primer at the event on the eXtreme Performance branding concept.

    So which chip is the X10 and does it even exist yet? Your guess is as good as mine.

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      One yr have passed since I decided to leave my office job and I never felt so good in my life… I started working over internet, for a company I discovered online, for several hours every day, and my income now is much bigger then it was on my office work… Pay-check i got for last month was for $9000… Great thing about this is the more free time i got with my family… CHILP.IT/728813e

  • Joe brant

    I dont think they release kernel sources for their open source products. Which is bad.

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