Android smartphones come in a wide variety of options, but the real options when it comes to phone SoCs are fairly limited. The mobile chip market is limited to only a handful of players for the most part, namely Qualcomm, Samsung, HiSilicon and MediaTek. Qualcomm recently announced the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 Plus — an upgraded version of their flagship SoC with an overclocked CPU and GPU to offer even better gaming performance in the flagship segment. Now, MediaTek is taking the opportunity to introduce its new Helio G-series chipsets — the new Helio G90 and Helio G90T, promising to bring improved gaming performance in the budget space; along with MediaTek HyperEngine Game Technology.
MediaTek Helio G90 Series
MediaTek’s naming convention indicates that the new Helio G90 series is the gaming-focused upgrade over its Helio P90 SoC. While MediaTek has not explicitly mentioned this in their press release or announcement, the Helio G90 appears to be based on the same 12nm process as the P90. The SoC comprises of 2x Cortex-A76 cores clocked @2.05Ghz and 6x Cortex-A55 cores. This is complemented by the ARM Mali G76 3EEMC4 GPU, which is a definite upgrade over the IMG PowerVR GM 9446 present on the P90. This is one of the highlight upgrades on the SoC as compared to other SoCs present in MediaTek’s lineup, as the same GPU with a 10-core cluster is also found on high-end chips like the Kirin 980, though the Mali G76 on the Helio G90 series comes with a 4-core cluster. The Mali G76 based on the Bifrost architecture is from 2018, and ARM’s latest premium GPU is the Mali G77 based on the Valhall architecture; but even then, this presents a very exciting opportunity as MediaTek’s SoCs often target cheaper devices. Including a capable GPU on the SoC would greatly enhance the gaming experience on lower-cost devices, making them better subjects for gaming on a budget. MediaTek aims to directly compete against the likes of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 730G, so we are excited to see how this pans out for the mid-range of the mobile market.
Other features for the G90 series include up to 10GB of LPDDR4X RAM clocked at up to 2133MHz. The SoC also supports up to 64MP single camera or 24MP plus 16MP dual camera configurations, along with the presence of pixel-binning support, and 240fps slo-mo, as well as AI facial detection. Interestingly, the chip also integrates dual wake-up word support, allowing phones to build in support for listening to more than one trigger word simultaneously. For networking, the series supports Cat-12 4G LTE modem with 3X CA and 4X4 MIMO technology.
|Specifications||MediaTek Helio G90||MediaTek Helio G90T|
|GPU||ARM Mali-G76 3EEMC4 up to 720MHz||ARM Mali-G76 3EEMC4 up to 800MHz|
|AI||2x MediaTek APU up to 750MHz||2x MediaTek APU up to 750MHz|
|Voice Wakeup||Single wakeup word||Dual wakeup word|
|Memory||LPDDR4x up to 8GB, 2133MHz (4,266 GT/s effective)||LPDDR4x up to 10GB, 2133MHz (4,266 GT/s effective)|
|Storage||UFS 2.1; eMMC 5.1||UFS 2.1; eMMC 5.1|
|Display||Up to 2400 x 1080, Full HD+, 21:9||Up to 2400 x 1080, Full HD+, 21:9|
|Display Refresh Rate||60Hz||Up to 90Hz|
|Modem||4G LTE Cat-12 (DL) / Cat-13 (UL) (FDD/TDD), 4×4 MIMO, 3CA, 256QAM, HUPE, IMS (VoLTE/ViLTE/WFC), eMBMS, Dual 4G VoLTE (DSDS), Global Bands, TAS 2.0||4G LTE Cat-12 (DL) / Cat-13 (UL) (FDD/TDD), 4×4 MIMO, 3CA, 256QAM, HUPE, IMS (VoLTE/ViLTE/WFC), eMBMS, Dual 4G VoLTE (DSDS), Global Bands, TAS 2.0|
MediaTek HyperEngine Game Technology
Alongside the launch of the G90 series, MediaTek also unveiled its HyperEngine game technology, featuring an array of engines to boost the mobile gaming experience:
- Networking Engine: The networking engine has the capability of detecting a degrading WiFi signal, and then triggering WiFi and LTE concurrency to seamlessly change from one connection to the other.
- Rapid Response Engine: Touch acceleration to improve in-game action-to-display speeds.
- Resource Management Engine: Intelligent redirection of device resources like CPU and GPU for optimum performance.
- Picture Quality Engine: Brings support for HDR10 standard with 10-bit Color Depth for vivid visuals on HDR-enabled smartphone displays.
- Dual WiFi Connection: Allows a single smartphone antenna to be connected to two WiFi bands (2.4GHz/5GHz) or two routers simultaneously. This promises to ensure a reliable connection, decrease latency and reduce game jitter.
- Call and Data Concurrency: Allows the data connection to remain active in an incoming call, so you can defer the call without getting thrown out of the game because of your inactive connection.
The MediaTek G90 Series is set to make its debut on a Xiaomi smartphone in the “near future” in India. We expect other OEMs to also pick up the device, seeing how gaming has a very promising future in the Indian market.
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