Qualcomm is undeniably the darling of Android OEMs, with their chips being the only viable option for flagship smartphones and tablets. That's something MediaTek would obviously like to change with its latest premium SoC, the Helio P90.

Built using the 12-nanometer process, the P90 uses the company's APU 2.0 AI architecture, promising "a new level of AI experiences that are 4X more powerful" than anything it's made before. As well as being useful for AI purposes such as photography, it's also said to greatly improve battery life.

As for the tech specs, it's an octa-core chip with two Arm A75s running at up to 2.2GHz and six A55s at 2.0GHz. The GPU is an Imagination Technologies PowerVR GM 9446, and the SoC utilizes MediaTek's CorePilot tech for efficient multi-core processing.

Support for ARCore is usually based on each device individually, but the Helio P90 platform gets the seal of approval itself, allowing for interesting AR applications to run on phones using the chip. MediaTek's collaboration with Google also extends to its image recognition software Lens, which is also confirmed for the P90 chip.

A new ISP AI engine will be used for better photo-taking, and explicitly supports the new 48-megapixl camera sensors from Samsung and Sony. All the usual connectivity is also on board, such as dual SIM dual VoLTE 4G LTE and Bluetooth 5.0. The first devices with the Helio P90 will ship at some point in the first quarter of 2019.

Press Release

MediaTek’s Helio P90 Is an AI Powerhouse for a New Level of AI Experiences and High Resolution Smartphone Photography

P90 brings a powerful AI engine and advanced camera features in an energy-efficient design

HSINCHU, Taiwan – Dec. 13, 2018 – MediaTek today announced the launch of the Helio P90 system-on-chip (SoC), which features APU 2.0, its new generation AI architecture for a great AI processing boost. With an impressive industry leading 1127 GMACs (2.25TOPs) performance, the Helio P90 boasts flagship device level AI power.

The Helio P90 built-in processing unit – APU 2.0 – a leading fusion AI architecture designed by MediaTek can deliver a new level of AI experiences that are 4X more powerful than the Helio P70 and Helio P60 chipsets. It helps users perform intensive AI tasks effortlessly with faster and more accurate results while at the same time delivering longer battery life.

“The Helio P90 gives device makers the ability to offer outstanding camera features, battery life, performance and top of the line AI capabilities, while making devices accessible to mass-market consumers,” said TL Lee, General Manager of MediaTek’s Wireless Communication business unit. “The Helio P90 is an AI processing powerhouse with ultra-fast performance and a host of AI-powered imaging improvements. This chip will reset consumer expectations of what a smartphone can do, and usher in a new era of super high-resolution smartphone photography to the market.”

The octa-core Helio P90 is designed with two Arm A75 processors operating at up to 2.2GHz and six A55 processors operating at up to 2.0GHz. It packs an Imagination Technologies PowerVR GM 9446 GPU. MediaTek’s newest CorePilot technology also ensures processing is done in the most efficient way across its cores. That means MediaTek Helio P90 gives users the highest sustainable performance with low power operation for the perfect combination of battery life and power on demand.

With its powerful AI engine, the MediaTek Helio P90 supports faster, complex and more dynamic AI experiences such as human pose detection which can track and analyze body movements. It also supports Google Lens, deep-learning facial detection, real-time beautification, object and scene identification, artificial reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR) acceleration, plus other real-time enhancements for photos and videos. Developers and device makers can create innovative AI applications with the Helio P90 using common frameworks such as TensorFlow, TF Lite, Caffe and Caffe2, based on MediaTek’s NeuroPilot SDK which is fully compliant to Google Android Neural Networks API (Android NNAPI).

MediaTek Helio P90 lets you capture the best pictures ever with support for a supersized 48MP camera or 24+16 MP dual cameras, bringing consumers the highest resolution advanced smartphone photography. Users can capture at 48MP with up to 30 frames per second (FPS) with zero shutter delay, or enjoy super slow-motion at 480FPS in HD to capture every moment. MediaTek brings a resolution revolution to imaging with upgraded triple image signal processors (ISPs) capable of 14-bit RAW and 10-bit YUV processing so photography enthusiasts have even more flexibility to capture and process stunning photos.

The new ISP AI engine, specially designed to provide AI camera experiences, can accurately detect faces and scenes in real-time under low light and motion conditions, making a great shot easier than ever for any user.

The Helio P90 supports dual SIM dual VoLTE 4G LTE WorldMode with a fast Cat-12 (DL) / Cat-13 (UL) 4G LTE modem. 4x4 MIMO and 256QAM provided better data throughput in highly populated areas. It also supports  2x2 802.11ac and Bluetooth 5.0

The Helio P90 is expected to be available globally in consumer devices starting in Q1 2019. For more details, visit MediaTek Helio P90.