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MediaTek's new Helio P chips give midrange phones a boost

Phones in China and beyond will soon sport the new P23 and P30 octa-core chips, which offer support for dual cameras.

MediaTek's new chips are designed for the midrange niche.

Taiwanese chipmaker MediaTek predicts that midrange phones will be the next big thing and is betting on its two new Helios P23 and P30 octa-core chips to ride that wave.

The chips are designed to deliver premium features at midrange prices, including support for dual cameras and better GPU performance, the company said Tuesday in Beijing.

While both chips sport eight Cortex A-53 processors with speeds of up to 2.3GHz, the P30 is the faster of the two due to its 950Mhz Mali G71 MP2 GPU, compared with the 770Mhz clock speed in the P23. The P30 will also support two 16-megapixel rear cameras, compared with the dual 13-megapixel cameras supported by the P23.

That said, the Helios P23 can handle dual Voice over LTE (VoLTE), meaning you can have two 4G SIM cards in your phone with both delivering high-definition audio via VoLTE instead of having 4G for one and relying on 2G for the other.

Expect to see Chinese brands such as Huawei, Vivo and Gionee launching MediaTek-powered devices in the near future, including in India, Russia and South America where MediaTek foresees huge demand for midrange phones.  

There's no word yet on whether MediaTek-powered phones will show up in the US, but a MediaTek spokesperson told CNET that phones with the new chips will be capable of supporting US bands.

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