Android Set-top Box: Bonux HZ20A / HZ20B – ZiiLABS Processors

Bonux, a Taiwan company founded in July 2009, announced two Android 2.2 set-top boxes based on ZiiLABS processors: The Bonux HZ20A and HZ20B. If you can remember Bonux also showcased a 50 USD Android STB earlier on. Here are the specs of the two media players: HZ20A HZ20B OS Android 2.2 CPU Ziilabs ZMS-08 ARM Cortex A8 @ 800 MHz Ziilabs ZMS-05 ARM9 @ 400 MHz RAM 512 MB DDR2 256 MB DDR2 NAND Flash 512MB 256MB Wifi 802.11 b/g/n (Via optional external USB Dongle) Adobe Flash Flash 10.1 FlashLite Video Codecs /Formats MPEG-1/MPEG-2/MPG-4(MP4 & MOV)/DivX(4/5)/Motion JPEG/H.264/WMV9/VC1/Real Video (RMVB – VGA Resolution) Audio Codecs MP3/WAV/WMA/AC3/AAC/OOG Max Resolution/Bitrate 1080p 40 Mbps Subtitles SRT/SMI/SUB/SSA File Systems FAT32 / NTFS(Read-Only) They are not using the default Android user interface, but their own customize UI, which can be a good thing on a TV. Their user interface has the usual Videos, Music, Pictures and Settings, plus the Browser, Youtube and Applications menu. HZ20A will …

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SATA-IO Universal Storage Module (USM) Standard

The Serial ATA International Organization (Sata-IO) announced the Universal Storage Module (USM) standard at CES 2011. This standard mainly defines mechanical characteristics and some electrical specs for hard drives so that they can be connected to devices (PC, laptops, tablets, televisions, media players, set-top boxes…) via a slot without the need to have an extra cable. This also allows a SATA harddisk to be used as a USB harddrive via a standard adapter. Later on this will also support other connection standards such as Firewire. The specifications will only support 2.5″ HDD, not the larger 3.5″.  Those specifications are not publicly available yet (Target: 1H 2011) since they are still developing them. In the mean time you can check the FAQ (below) and have a look a the USM presentation slides. Seagate showcased their GoFlex design based on the USM specs where you can see the forum factor of the SATA drive (that will be inserted in a slot) and a …

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Nufront ARM Cortex-A9 Laptop running Ubuntu at CES 2011

Nufront (新岸线) showcased their minipc based on Nusmart 2816 at Techcon 2010, they are now back at CES 2011 to show off their laptop reference designs. They provide two laptop designs with 10″ and a 14″ displays. The mother board is the same for both devices, only the casing changes to accommodate the display. The laptops runs Ubuntu and Android 2.2. They will also support some undisclosed operating system(s) later on (It should be Windows 8 and/or Chrome OS).  The processor is a dual core Cortex A9 running at 2GHz, so I suppose this is the Nusmart 2816. The laptop will have 1 or 2 GB RAM depending on the configuration. Nufront said those laptops should be available within 6 months. No indication of price has been given. Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later …

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Third Generation OLPC XO Laptop powered by ARM Marvell Armada 610

OLPC (One Laptop Per Child) was also at CES 2011 in Marvell stand with their third generation OLPC XO laptop named OLPC XO-1.75, after the first generation using AMD and the second Via Technologies. Charbax interviewed Ed NcNierney, Chief Technology Office at OLPC. They only changed the PCB in this version, i.e. the casing, keyboard, monitor is the same as the previous generations.The processor used in OLPC XO-1.75 is the ARM based Marvell Armada 610 (single core) running at 1GHz with 1GB RAM and 4GB Flash. The laptop can be recharged with a hand crane for 1 minute, then the laptop can be used for 10 minutes (color) and about 12 minutes (black and white). With the third generation, the price is only marginally cheaper than the previous generation (<200 USD), but the power consumption is now 2 Watt (instead of 4 Watt) and it is the most important part, as electricity costs are high where OLPC laptops are used. …

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3D Capable Android Tablet: iStation Zood (Z3D)

iStation, a south korean company, announced the iStation Zood (codenamed Z3D) one the first (if not the first) stereoscopic 3D capable Android Tablet. You’ll need 3D content and wear polarised 3D glasses to take advantage of it. It features a 7″ multi-touch capacitive touchscreen and is powered by a Telechips ARM11 core processor (TCC8900?) running Android 2.1. The performance does not seem that great, but it’s still usable and being based on Telechips the price should be relatively low. Here are the Zood specifications on iStation website: Real 3D panel 7″ TFT-LCD (WVGA, 800×480) Capacitive touchscreen 16/32 Nand flash Acceleration sensor Wifi 802.11 b/g/n Bluetooth v2.1 + EDR FM Radio USB 2.0 Host and Slave SDHC card reader HDMI output Android 2.1 In the video below (but not in the specs?), they say this tablet also supports digital terrestrial television (DTT), now only supporting T-DMB, the standard used in south Korea. Once it is launched in March 2011, This tablet …

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Dvico Tvix XROID A1 Video Preview at CES 2011

Dvico should start shipping the Tvix Xroid A1, its latest Android media player based on Sigma Designs SMP8656 in March 2011 so it will be available for end users in Q2 2011. Dvico is now at CES 2011 to promote their media player TViX HD XROID A1. Here are the main characteristics: Full native web browser App-secure: Favorite application downloadable and installable Multitasking feature support with apps Video Formats: H.264, MKV, MPG, ISO, IFO, TS, TP, etc… Lossless audio files playback (FLAC, Wave Pack) Innovative Web remote (via smartphone) Wifi 802.11n network (via optional USB dongle) UPnP & NAS, Samba client, NFS, Netshare, FTP Video outputs: HDMI (Video 24-bit), composite, component Maximum resolution up to 1920x1080p (1080p) USB 3.0, e-Sata, SD SDHD and MS card reader Support for 3.5: Internal SATA harddisk Here’s a video with a demo of TViX HD XROID A1 web browser and multimedia functions (video/music). Currently TViX A1 is running Android 2.1 but they will upgrade …

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Rockchip RK29xx Processors at CES 2011

Rockchip (瑞芯微电子), a Fuzhou (China) based company, showcased its new RK29XX processors at CES 2011. The processors are aimed at smartphones, mid, tablet and internet tv (smart tv) and compete directly with the like of Qualcomm snapdragon or Samsung Hummingbird. Here are the specs for the RK29XX series: 1.2 GHz ARM Cortex A8 core with Neon and 512KB L2 cache High performance 2D and 3D processors supporting OpenGL ES 2.0 and Open VG. The GPU can deliver up to 60 MT/s. 1080p video decoding for H.264, VP8, RV, WMV, AVS, H.263, MPE-4…. 1080p H.264 video encoding Supports DDRIII, DDRII, Mobile DDR memory 24-bit HW ECC for MLC Nand, support e-MMC boot 3 USB ports for device, host, 3G module 2 SD  ports for SD card and WiFi Sensor interface for front and rear camera, up to 5M Standard TFT/EPD controller for variable panels 8 channel I2S and SPDIF TS port for mobile and terrestrial TV, ATSC-T/MH… Ethernet ports Rockchip RK29XX …

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Motorola Atrix 4G: A mobile turns into a Laptop

Motorola showcased the Atrix 4g smartphone based on NVidia Tegra 2 and running Android 2.2 (upgradable to Android 2.3 gingerbread later in 2011). It can be plugged directly into an ultra-thin laptop chassis (Laptop Dock for Motorola Atrix 4G). Motorola calls that a WebTop. The dock itself has a resolution of 1366×768 but the phone can support up to 1280×1024 in Desktop Mode. Contrary to Lenovo LePad, where the dock has an Intel iCore processor, all processor is done by the smartphone. Once in the dock you’ll be able to use the keyboard and mouse to check your emails (Gmail), play videos (720p supported, but 480p is recommended for smoothness), send SMS, browse the web with Mozilla Firefox (Add-ons are also supported) and more. The smartphone has a Citrix receiver so it can run Windows XP/Vista/7 thru the Citrix server (Virtual Machine). It also is capable of docking directly into a big-screen TV with a second dock (HD Multimedia Dock …

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