Nvidia leading the smartbook revolution?
Seeing the CES product announcements poouring in, one thing stands out clearly: a boatload of new tablets, media devices and smartbooks are based on Nvidia’s new Tegra 2 system-on-chip (SOC).
The most notable ones:
- The Boxee Box media player
- The MSI 10″ Android tablet
- The Compal Android tablet
- The ICD Ultra and Vega tablets
- Mobinnova Beam WinCE smartbook
- Notion Ink Adam Android tablet
- Audi future car navigation system
- ASUS Eee Pad tablet
- Pegatron Neo smartbook
- ViewSonic VTablet 101
The flood of Tegra2 products doesn’t come to me as a surprise since the technical capabilities of the SOC has been known for a while and is considered impressive. The chip contains 2 ARM Cortex A9 cores running at maximum 1Ghz and other cores for graphics, audio and HD video encoding/decoding.
While most of the currently popular ARM based devices contain Cortex A8 level cores, Nvidia seems to be ahead of others in the ARM ecosystem by quickly designing and implementing a dual core A9 solution.
Device designers/manufacturers seem to be appreciating Nvidia’s efforts judging by the number of devices announced for the platform.
Intel may have made a big mistake by alienating Nvidia from the Atom architecture by denying information about the hw interfaces. Although, Ion 2 has been announced, Nvidia’s focus is clearly on Tegra now and that may result in some very serious competiotion to Intel’s Atom.