Snapdragon 800 Could Power HTC Windows RT Tablets

Even as Acer remains in two minds about a tablet lineup running Windows RT, another Taiwanese company is doing the opposite. Riding on the success of its HTC One handset, HTC is planning two Windows RT tablets that retain its styling, to take on Apple much in the same way its handset is flying circles around the iPhone 5.

HTC is planning to address two size categories, the 7-inch and the 12-inch, which it codenamed "R7" and "R12." Both tablets run Windows RT, and high-power ARM SoCs. Pleased with the way Qualcomm's Snapdragon 600 SoC is driving the HTC One, the company could opt for its bigger sibling, the Snapdragon 800, to drive its tablets. Originally designed for high-end smartphones, and with Exynos 5 Octa in its crosshairs, Snapdragon 800 couldn't score too many design wins with smartphone designers, because of its high power draw and heat output, even if it meant class-leading performance. Tablets could provide the ideal platform for these chips. Snapdragon 800 packs four ARM Cortex-A15 cores clocked at 2.30 GHz, and Adreno 330 graphics.

HTC could also tinker with high-resolution displays for its upcoming tablets. R7 is rumored to ship with 1920 x 1080 pixels resolution, the highest in its category. The R12, on the other hand, could feature a 4:3 aspect ratio panel, with 2048 x 1536 pixels resolution. Such panels are already available to tablet designers in the 9.7-inch format. HTC could even toss in other premium features, such as the 13-megapixel primary camera the HTC One sports.

Lastly, there's talk of HTC also working on tablets based on Windows 8, likely codenamed W7 and W12. Windows 8 warrants an x86 platform, for which HTC could hold out till it finds a suitable chip from Intel or AMD, the only two high-volume x86 chip-makers.

The R7 and R12 from HTC won't launch any time soon, probably because HTC is frantically trying to step up supplies of HTC One. October 13, 2013 is listed as a tentative launch date.