On Sunday, NVIDIA announced a new processor line-up intended to power a new class of fast, compact devices. Designed for long battery life, “full” internet capacity, and high-end games, these devices (and the Tegra chip that powers them) will also be able to display high-definition video.
The graphics chipmaker is calling the Tegra 600 and Tegra 650 processors “computers on a chip” for highly portable, visual devices, and it is aiming squarely at a market currently in the sights of Intel, the number on chip manufacturer on the market.
NVIDIA branches out into Devices Smaller than a Desktop
Tegra chips have an ARM 11 central processing unit core (the processor’s main electronic brain), a graphics processing unit, a media processor, system memory and peripherals in one ultra-low power-consuming chip. The entire Tegra array fits on a square piece of material smaller than a dime.
Nvidia hopes the Tegra chips, which also include its previously-announced application processor APX2500 (think smartphones and handsets), will go into a broad array of computing devices. But NVIDIA hopes they can break into an emerging category called mobile Internet devices, or MIDs.
What is an MID?
Nvidia says it is more than a dumbed-down notebook PC or super-portable notebook with keyboards so tiny you can barely type on them. MIDs generally have (or are going to have, according to industry experts) screens of four to 12 inches in diameter and may have a touch-screen or keyboard, a connection for a game controller or a wireless high-speed Internet connection.
But super-compact notebooks, smaller even than so-called ultra-mobile personal computers (UMPCs), have already taken off. The Asus Eee PC has been a runaway success, and Intel has said it would not be surprised to see sales of what it calls Netbook PCs such as the Eee PC and others top 50 million by 2011.
Here’s hoping NVIDIA’s chips do as well as they hoped, and keep your eyes on TigerDirect for the first Tegra products later this year!
Image Source: Reuters