At the NVIDIA Investors day, Mike Rayfield (General Manager, Mobile Business unit) has presented what the future of Tegra was going to be. You may have noticed that NVIDIA’s current Icera i410 LTE modem has been approved by AT&T, but the future is of course the “integration” of LTE (and LTE next, says NVIDIA) into the Tegra chips. This will effectively happen with the upcoming Tegra chip code-named “Grey”.
Grey has been on NVIDIA’s roadmap for some time, but this is the first time that NVIDIA confirmed that it will be the chip that integrates the programmable modem technology that was acquired with Icera. At the moment, this is the only integrated LTE alternative to Qualcomm that is on the horizon, although it is fair to think that by next year, there may be other players.
Regardless, this is a critical step for NVIDIA as Grey should enable the company to address a large chunk of the smartphone and tablet market that cannot be reached today with Tegra 2 and Tegra 3. Just look at the LTE devices line-up in the USA, and you will quickly notice that few to no Tegra 3 chips are present. With Grey and the upcoming “Wayne” (the next-gen high-end) Tegra chip, NVIDIA has a shot at covering the full spectrum of the market, from low-end to mid-range to high-end.
For the average consumer, this means that devices announced with a Tegra chip, like the HTC One X, will be less likely to be equipped with a non-NVIDIA processor by the time it shows up on a USA LTE network.