The Nvidia Tegra 4i boasts about being half the size of comparisons quad-core LTE chips (read Qualcomm chips), yet it features a quad-core A9 R4 processor that can be clocked at up to 2.3GHz. Nvidia using an A9 processor instead of the new A7 might come as a surprise, but the important thing here is that it is the R4 modification of the A9 coming with a 15% to 30% better performance than standard A9. Having the A9 as a base actually makes this much more similar to last year's Tegra 3 rather than the new Tegra 4.
Nvidia brags about ‘always-on HDR’ and other features made possible by the brilliant graphics on this new Tegra 4i chip.
In terms of power efficiency, there is the quad-core processor helped by a fifth companion core for mundane less intensive tasks. Add to that the smaller size, and you get significant battery savings and possibilities for thinner and lighter devices.
When it comes to release date, Nvidia expects the first Tegra 4i based devices to arrive on the market around the first quarter of 2014 as the chip design samples will start sampling in Q3 2013.
NVIDIA Introduces Its First Integrated Tegra LTE Processor
Tegra 4i Delivers Highest Performance of Any Single-Chip Smartphone Processor
SANTA CLARA, Calif.—February 19, 2013— NVIDIA today introduced its first fully
integrated 4G LTE mobile processor, the NVIDIA® Tegra®
4i, which is significantly faster yet half the size of
its nearest competitor.
Previously codenamed “Project Grey,” the Tegra 4i processor features 60 custom
NVIDIA GPU cores; a quad-core CPU based
on ARM’s newest and most efficient core— the R4 Cortex-A9 CPU— plus a fifth battery
saver core; and a version of the NVIDIA
i500 LTE modem optimized
for integration. The result: an extremely power efficient, compact, high-
performance mobile processor that enables smartphone performance and capability
previously available only in expensive super phones.
“NVIDIA is delivering for the first time a single, integrated processor that powers
all the major functions of a smartphone,” said Phil Carmack, senior vice president
of the Mobile business at NVIDIA. “Tegra 4i phones will provide amazing computing
power, world-class phone capabilities, and exceptionally long battery life.”
Tegra 4i’s new 2.3 GHz CPU was jointly designed by NVIDIA and ARM, and is the most
efficient, highest performance CPU core on the market.
“Tegra 4i is the very latest SoC solution based on the ARM Cortex-A9 processor and
demonstrates the ability of ARM and our partners to continue to push the performance
of technology and create exciting user experiences,” says Tom Cronk, executive vice
president and general manager, processor division, ARM. “ARM and NVIDIA worked
closely to further optimize the Cortex-A9 processor to drive performance and
efficiency in areas such as streaming and responsiveness. This is an example of the
collaboration and innovation that enables ARM technology-based solutions to be
market drivers through multiple generations of SoC solutions.”
Utilizing the same architecture as Tegra 4’s GPU, Tegra 4i features five times the
number of GPU cores of Tegra 3 for high-quality, console-quality gaming experiences
and full 1080p HD displays. It also integrates an optimized version of the NVIDIA
i500 software-defined radio modem which provides LTE capabilities, and makes
networking upgradability and scalability fast and easy.
''NVIDIA’s Tegra 4i appears to outperform the leading integrated LTE chip
significantly, and also benefits from an integrated ‘soft-modem’ that can be
re-programmed over-the-air to support new frequencies and air interfaces – something
other modem vendors can only dream of,” said Stuart Robinson, director, Handset
Component Technologies Program at Strategy Analytics.”
Tegra 4i mobile processor’s camera capabilities include the NVIDIA Chimera™
Computational Photography Architecture recently announced in Tegra
4. This delivers many advanced
features, including the world’s first always-on high dynamic range (HDR)
capabilities, first tap to track functionality and first panoramic photos with HDR.
NVIDIA also introduced its reference smartphone platform code-named “Phoenix” for
the Tegra 4i processor to demonstrate its unique mobile technologies. Phoenix is a
blueprint that phone makers can reference in designing and building future Tegra 4i
smartphones to help get them to market quicker.
The Tegra 4i mobile processor will be demonstrated in the NVIDIA booth in Hall 7,
Stand #C110, at the 2013 Mobile World Congress show
in Barcelona, Spain, on Feb. 25-28.
As a recap, the Tegra 4 family includes:
Cortex-A15, plus battery saver core
R4 Cortex-A9, plus battery saver core
Tegra 4 GPU Cores
Optional via NVIDIA i500
Integrated NVIDIA i500 core
Chimera Computational Photography Architecture
NVIDIA, Tegra, LTE, smartphone, mobile, tablet, quad core, gaming, GPU, CPU,
GeForce, Chimera, ARM, HDR, TegraZone
NVIDIA (NASDAQ: NVDA) awakened the world to
computer graphics when it invented the
GPU in 1999. Today, its
processors power a broad range of
products from smartphones to
NVIDIA’s mobile processors are
used in cell phones,
tablets and auto infotainment
gamers rely on GPUs to enjoy spectacularly
immersive worlds. Professionals use them to create 3D
graphics and visual effects
in movies and to design everything from golf clubs to jumbo jets. And researchers
utilize GPUs to advance the frontiers of science with high performance
The company has more than 5,000 patents issued, allowed or filed, including ones
covering ideas essential to modern computing. For more information, see
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