MediaTek's 10-core Helio X30 now official, debuting next quarter

At Mobile World Congress, MediaTek has officially kicked off availability of its high-end SoC for 2017, the Helio X30. The chipset is built on a 10nm node, and will be making its debut in phones next quarter.

Like its predecessor, the Helio X30 offers a tri-cluster CPU design that sees two Cortex A73 cores clocked at 2.5GHz to form the high-performance cluster, complemented by four Cortex A53 cores at 2.2GHz and four Cortex A53 at 1.9GHz. MediaTek is touting its intelligent task switcher, CorePilot 4.0, to deliver up to 25% power savings. CorePilot 4.0 pulls data from the device's thermals and relies on "user experience monitoring technology" to predict which CPU cores should be used for a particular task. The idea is to maximize battery life while ensuring that users don't notice a drop in performance.

On the GPU front, the Helio X30 fields Imagination's PowerVR Series7XT Plus clocked at 800MHz, which according to MediaTek is 2.4 times faster than last year's Helio X20 while consuming up to 60% less power. The SoC accommodates displays up to 2560x1600 in resolution, up to 8GB of LPDDR4X RAM, and eMMC 5.1 or UFS 2.1 flash memory.

Other improvements include a vision processing unit for processing images that uses 10% of the power a regular CPU would for undertaking the same task. The 14-bit Imagiq 2.0 ISP supports 28MP sensors, dual 16MP+16MP sensors, improved EIS for smooth videos and ultra-fast autofocus.

The SoC is also the first to include a hardware-based 4K 10-bit HDR10 decode for 4K video playback at 30fps. Also included is a Category 10 LTE modem with 3x carrier aggregation that has a theoretical peak of 450Mbps.

MediaTek mentions that the first phones powered by the Helio X30 will be available in the second quarter of 2017. Chinese manufacturer Vernee has already announced that its upcoming Apollo 2 will feature the Helio X30, and we'll likely hear more about other handsets that will be powered by the SoC in the coming weeks.

Harish Jonnalagadda
Senior Editor - Asia

Harish Jonnalagadda is a Senior Editor overseeing Asia at Android Central. He leads the site's coverage of Chinese phone brands, contributing to reviews, features, and buying guides. He also writes about storage servers, audio products, and the semiconductor industry. Contact him on Twitter at @chunkynerd.