January 22, 2005 The convergence of the mobile phone with the PDA, digital camera, gaming device, MP3 player and portable video player looks set to accelerate this year with the arrival of hard disk drives small enough and tough enough to handle the going. The world's first mobile phone with a hard drive went on sale in Korea and Japan late last year - Samsung's SPH-V5400 - and already the signs are there to indicate we'll see a rash of phones released with disk drives this year. This week Texas instruments announced that Samsung has chosen TI's OMAP-DM270 processor, an extension to TI's widely adopted OMAP processor portfolio, to power its new camera phone model. The camera phone with hard-disk drive includes a video-on demand feature.
By using TI's high-performance imaging processor, Samsung will be able to deliver high-resolution still images and high-performance video to its camera-enabled feature phones.
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As we reported earlier this week, Toshiba's ever-shrinking (in volume, not storage capacity) disk drives http://www.gizmag.com.au/go/3618/ will begin finding their way into mobile devices this year, indicating that 12 months hence, we'll be seeing phones with a capacity of 8-10GB, substantially larger than the 1.5GB in the V5400.
The interesting aspect to watch this year will be how much the ever-more-capable mobile phone will impact on the sale of MP3 players in particular, but low-end digital cameras
Business Week has a great article covering mobile phone convergence.View gallery - 2 images