If you still own a feature phone and thought it is not going to provide any more cutting-edge performances or you cannot flaunt it because of its looks, then think again!
Like Nokia and HMD Global, which gave the Nokia 3310 a new lease of life, it seems Qualcomm is also trying to modernize old feature phones, but for emerging markets.
Qualcomm 205 Platform
At an event in New Delhi, Qualcomm announced its latest Qualcomm 205 Mobile Platform.
In three years, this is the first time that the company is updating its entry-level mobile platform. It is doing so by bringing in 4G services in phones along with LTE connectivity.
The Qualcomm 205 chip is being developed while keeping in mind feature phones, which are extremely popular in emerging markets such as Latin America, Southeast Asia, and India. According to reports, the chip has been developed in India, with the "Make in India" initiative from the Indian government.
Although the low-end chips won't be as advanced as Qualcomm's Snapdragon chipsets, it will support LTE connectivity and 4G services for feature phones.
"The launch of Qualcomm 205 Mobile Platform presents a unique opportunity for OEMs, operators and content providers to extend superior experiences to users by enabling data on feature phones," said Jim Cathey, the SVP of Qualcomm at the launch event
What Are The Features?
Qualcomm asserts that the platform has been designed specifically to bring 4G connectivity to feature phones. The chipset comes with an X5 Category 4 LTE modem, which gives a download speed of 150 Mbps and 50 Mbps of upload speed.
The platform also supports Bluetooth 4.1, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, 720p video streaming at 30 frames per second, and VoWIFI. Apart from these features, the chipset comes with an ISP that supports a 3-megapixel rear camera and a 480p VGA front camera, which will support 60 frames per second.
Qualcomm promises a long battery life for the feature phones housing the 205 SoC. The company says that phones using the Qualcomm 205 SoC will give standby time of 45 days, talk time of 20 hours, and 86 hours of music playback.
Qualcomm has already partnered with the OEMs/ODMs such as Uniscope, Flex, Borqs, Reliance Jio, FIH/Megafone, TCL, Micromax, and more.
The company claims that it took such an initiative to help people who are staying in rural areas as well as areas where there is limited electricity.
Qualcomm states that the chip has already been developed but will hit the market, housed in supported feature phone, by the second quarter of 2017.
Photo: Kārlis Dambrāns | Flickr