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Qualcomm’s new mobile platform brings 4G to feature phones

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New entry-level platform is the first update in three years

Qualcomm is updating its entry-level mobile platform for the first time in three years, bringing LTE connectivity and 4G services to phones designed for sale in markets like India, Latin America, and Southeast Asia. The company announced its Qualcomm 205 platform today at an event in New Delhi, which includes its 205 System-on-Chip (SoC) capable of up to 150 Mbps download speeds on 4G, 3G, and 2G networks, as well as a dual-core 1.1 GHz CPU, Qualcomm’s Adreno GPU, and dual-SIM support.

The 205 platform won’t have the advanced capabilities of Qualcomm’s flagship chips, but it will support front and rear 3-megapixel cameras, a 480p VGA display running at 60 frames per second, and let users stream videos. Most importantly, it should provide an affordable way for people in countries like India and Brazil to make use of the growing number of 4G connections, allowing them to upgrade from 3G or even 2G phones for cheap.

The company says that these phones will enable easy access to financial transactions for people who run small businesses, enable the use of Voice over LTE (VoLTE) and Voice over Wi-Fi (VoWi-Fi), and open up a world of streaming video and music to users. The feature phones that use the 205 SoC can also run longer on one charge, making phones useful in rural areas or places with limited electricity. Qualcomm says the platform is available starting today, but should begin to reach the market in devices by the second quarter of this year.