NVIDIA’s “Fermi” architecture hits portable computers with the launch of the GeForce 400M family of chips that covers the “performance” (from 48 cores) and “enthusiast” (up to 288 cores) segments. With DirectX 11 features and better performance per square mm (or per Watt), the GeForce 400M Series ups the ante when compared with the previous 300M Series, by boosting the performance by as much as 40% (according to NVIDIA) – within the same footprint and power/thermal envelope. As one could expect, all the new chips support CUDA, NVIDIA’s architecture for non-graphics computing that can could boost physics, photo processing or audio/video compression (with apps support).
But What NVIDIA is the most excited about these days is the prospect that the web itself is becoming GPU-accelerated. With Flash 10.1, HTML 5 video+canvas and Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG), the most used application (the web) will feel and look better, with a GPU. IE9 has already demonstrated this recently. Obviously, most chips support stereo 3D (425M and beyond) and most importantly they support Optimus, NVIDIA’s switchable graphics technology that saves battery life. Expect to find these graphics processors all over: NVIDIA says that 6 of the 7th largest computer makers have products that will soon hit the shelves.