IHS iSuppli offers first inside look at Mot XOOM tablet

motorolaxoomEl Segundo, Calif. — At first glance the teardown team at market research firm IHS iSuppli finds that the new Motorola Inc. XOOM wireless 3G tablet — model MZ600 — running Google Android 3.0 on Verizon Wireless’ CDMA network sports a dual-core Nvidia Tegra 2 CPU. By using a dual-core design, compared to the Apple iPad that uses a single-core ARM processor, the XOOM can run processes and software much faster, said IHS.

The analysis also finds that the XOOM includes nearly four times as much SDRAM for code storage that Apple’s A4 microprocessor used, further boosting performance.

The 10.1-inch display, 1.6-pound tablet closely approximates the Apple Inc. iPad’s dimensions but beat its year-old predecessor by including both a 2-megapixel front-facing camera, and a 5-megapixel auto focus primary camera, reported IHS iSuppli.

But, unlike the iPad, the XOOM comes in only one configuration, with 32 GB of NAND storage. IHS iSuppli researchers said the XOOM makes up for this lack of variety with its dual-core Tegra 2 apps processor, 1GB SDRAM and lots of extra sensors.

Other key components include the Atmel mXT1386 touch screen controller, a new 32-bit 4-chip solution capable of registering up to 16 discrete touch points as well as CMOS image sensors. The device also packs a host of sensors including an electronic compass from AKM Semiconductor, a 3-axis accelerometer from Kionix, a 3-axis gyroscope from STMicroelectronics and a pressure monitor from Bosch Sensortec.

According to IHS microelectromechanical sensor expert Jérémie Bouchaud, the pressure sensor works in conjunction with the global positioning system (GPS) for indoor navigation applications.

IHS says the Motorola XOOM is marketed to consumers as a device that is upgradable to 4G free of charge but consumers must send their products back to the factory for a physical upgrade to 4G networking. According to the teardown team, there were no 4G components found in the XOOM tablet aside from a dummy miniPCIe card, which is a placeholder for the future LTE upgrade, they say. However, Motorola included two MIMO antennas and a SIM card slot in preparation for the LTE upgrade.

A complete analysis is expected next week that will include a bill of materials (BOM) and hardware cost assessment.