Menu
Nvidia will shun mainstream phones with Tegra 4i, CEO says

Nvidia will shun mainstream phones with Tegra 4i, CEO says

Nvidia will focus on tablets, gaming devices and automotive markets with Tegra chips

Nvidia's Sheild gaming system

Nvidia's Sheild gaming system

Nvidia isn't interested in the mainstream smartphone market and will focus its Tegra efforts on tablets and high-end "superphones", according to the company's CEO.

"Our non-focus is mainstream phones," CEO Jen-Hsun Huang said during Nvidia's quarterly earnings call.

The chip maker is interested in devices that can take advantage of Tegra's graphics capabilities, such as gaming systems. It's also interested in automobiles, where it sees a growing demand for "visual" computing for things like back-seat displays and collision avoidance systems.

It's also interested in superphones, or high-end smartphones with large screens, Huang said.

The first products with the company's Tegra 4i processor, which has an integrated software-based modem, will be announced by the end of this quarter, Huang said. The chip itself was announced early last year.

In January, Nvidia also revealed plans for a powerful 64-bit processor with 192 graphics cores called the Tegra K1. The first products based on that chip will be announced in the second half of this year, he said.

Nvidia dabbled in the budget smartphone market with its Tegra 3, which appeared in devices from HTC, Lenovo, Fujitsu, Motorola and others. But its successor chip, the Tegra 4, was a disappointment and Nvidia couldn't hold onto that market, said Jim McGregor, principal analyst at Tirias Research.

The whole smartphone market was going through something of a transition at the time, but it's not settled down and Asian chip makers such as Rockchip and MediaTek have established a lead in the budget area, McGregor said.

Nvidia isn't willing to compete in that market with single- or dual-core chips, partly because its products are high-performance and the company can't afford the lower returns.

"The devices they have aren't designed for the budget market," McGregor said.

The Tegra 4 has been unable to match the success of the Tegra 3, appearing in just a few handsets and tablets. It's used in Microsoft's Surface 2, Hewlett-Packard's SlateBook X2 and Nvidia's Shield handheld gaming console.

Nvidia's Tegra revenue from the fourth quarter was US$131 million, down 37 percent compared to the same quarter the previous year.

"The year-over-year decrease in our Tegra processor business was largely due to higher sales volume of Tegra 3 for smartphone and tablet devices in the prior year, compared with current volumes of Tegra 4," Nvidia CFO Colette Kress said in documents filed with U.S. regulators.

But the company expects Tegra revenue to grow as sales of the Tegra 4i and K1 pick up.

Nvidia's profit for the fourth quarter was $147 million, down 16 percent. Revenue was $1.1 billion, up 3 percent on strong sales of graphics processors, the company said.

Agam Shah covers PCs, tablets, servers, chips and semiconductors for IDG News Service. Follow Agam on Twitter at @agamsh. Agam's e-mail address is agam_shah@idg.com


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags smartphonesprocessorsconsumer electronicsnvidiaComponents

Featured

Slideshows

The making of an MSSP: a blueprint for growth in NZ

The making of an MSSP: a blueprint for growth in NZ

Partners are actively building out security practices and services to match, yet remain challenged by a lack of guidance in the market. This exclusive Reseller News Roundtable - in association with Sophos - assessed the making of an MSSP, outlining the blueprint for growth and how partners can differentiate in New Zealand.

The making of an MSSP: a blueprint for growth in NZ
Reseller News Platinum Club celebrates leading partners in 2018

Reseller News Platinum Club celebrates leading partners in 2018

The leading players of the New Zealand channel came together to celebrate a year of achievement at the inaugural Reseller News Platinum Club lunch in Auckland. Following the Reseller News Innovation Awards, Platinum Club provides a platform to showcase the top performing partners and start-ups of the past 12 months, with more than ​​50 organisations in the spotlight.​​​

Reseller News Platinum Club celebrates leading partners in 2018
Meet the top performing HP partners in NZ

Meet the top performing HP partners in NZ

HP has honoured its leading partners in New Zealand during 2018, following 12 months of growth through the local channel. Unveiled during the fourth running of the ceremony in Auckland, the awards recognise and celebrate excellence, growth, consistency and engagement of standout Kiwi partners.

Meet the top performing HP partners in NZ
Show Comments