Nvidia at CES: New Tegra 3 tech, 7-inch tablet, ICS on Transformer Prime

By on January 9, 2012, 8:57 PM

During its tablet-centric CES keynote on Monday, Nvidia brought an Asus Transformer Prime on stage to run some demos and chat about the market. According to Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang, tablets are the fastest growing consumer device in history, outpacing smartphones and netbooks in terms of year-one success. About 20 million units were sold in 2010 and that mushroomed to 60 million in 2011.

About 60% of those sales were iPads and the remaining chunk was divvied up between dozens of Android and Windows devices. Although the iPad has been a dominate force in the business since its arrival in 2009, Huang believes variety is the spice of life. He compared tablets to cars, noting that the latter market offers a diverse selection. That seems like a flawed comparison, but there you have it.

The Tegra 3-powered Transformer Prime running Ice Cream Sandwich (a world's first for tablets -- available today) was the centerpiece of Nvidia's presentation, which included several game demos and an appearance by celebrity gamer Johnathan "Fatality" Wendel. Most notably, Huang played Shadowgun in multiplayer LAN on the Transformer Prime and Wendel played Skyrim through a remote service.

Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang holding Asus' 7-inch tablet

Huang eventually welcomed Asus CEO Jerry Shen on stage, who unveiled a 7-inch tablet (as rumored last week). The new device (purportedly called the Memo 370T) will be priced at only $249, runs Ice Cream Sandwich and houses a quad-core Tegra 3, a 1280x800 IPS display, 1GB of memory and an 8MP camera. Huang says it's nearly as powerful as the Transformer Prime. No details on availability yet.

Nvidia also dedicated some of its stage time to sharing a new Tegra 3-exclusive technology called Direct Touch, which promises to improve the responsiveness touch-based input. Instead of having a separate controller to process the analog-to-digital conversion of touch, the Tegra 3 can handle this function natively -- and it's better at it. Direct Touch can process triple the samples per second of a separate chip.




User Comments: 14

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Guest said:

NO 600 series GPUS? WTF!

NOT AGAIN NVIDIA!

AMD is wiping the floor with the 7000 series right now and you show us a tablet!

back to the LAB!!!!

Wendig0 Wendig0, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I agree Guest... IMO, Asus dropped the ball on the Transformer Prime with the poor GPS/WiFi reception. I gave up on all tablets but the Kindle Fire, and ended up buying a new Nikon camera instead.

Guest said:

i got my ics @ 2:00 in the morning on prime.

Guest said:

Sounds incredible. I hope that this launch will be worldwide, including the UK! The UK is still awaiting an announcement for the Kindle Fire...

Wagan8r Wagan8r said:

I think I'll be getting the MeMo 370T over the Prime. It's hard to justify spending double for something when the only real difference is a larger screen (same resolution) and a flaky GPS.

Guest said:

Uhhmm... I think we already have cell phones. Jus saying

Burty117 Burty117, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Guest said:

Uhhmm... I think we already have cell phones. Jus saying

Yeah I keep saying the same thing to myself, I keep thinking "I could get an iPad" but then i get my iPhone out and realise I can do more with it than an iPad, then I look at these tablets and just feel they're unfinished and still don't off anything over my iPhone.

When Windows 8 comes out for ARM and they make truely decent tablets which can do something my iPhone can't, then I might be tempted.

Although I would still probably not bother with a tablet and just get an ultrabook.

Guest said:

"AMD is wiping the floor with the 7000 series right now and you show us a tablet!"

Did you read the article?

According to Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang, tablets are the fastest growing consumer device in history, outpacing smartphones and netbooks in terms of year-one success.

Ok so what's more important? Releasing a $500+ high-end GPU almost no one cares right now with most PC games being console ports unless you happen to be one of the 1000 nerds with Eyefinity setups or have $$ to blow on a 30 inch LCD/LED, or releasing a device the mainstream consumer actually cares about that you can sell MILLIONS of units??

Also, HD7000 is not killing anything. HD7300-7600 OEM and mobile HD7300-7600 parts are rebadges of HD5000/6000 series.

Until AMD has $99-$299 HD7000 series that can actually make HD6850/6870/HD6950/6970 & GTX550Ti/GTX560/560Ti/570 irrelevant, HD7000 series is killing nothing, except brains cells in fanboys touting their red or green team's superiority.

Time to take some marketing classes and understand these concepts:

1) Price elasticity for $500 GPUs

2) Supply and Demand and its relationship in historically slow Q1 for technology products

3) Market penetration

4) Product life-cycle.

HD7970 is an awesome card but let's not go crazy and start delcaring the end of NV based on 1 $550 product, especially when the 2 biggest games coming on the PC this year - Diablo III and Starcraft 2 Heart of the Swarm can be maxed out on a $140 HD6870.

Guest said:

if nvidia succeed convincing android tablet or phone vendors using their new tegra (dominate android phone/tablet using their Tegra), just think how much money they can make? even Radeon wiping the floor with 7000 series and make a lot of money, still can't match how much Tegra could make money..

Guest said:

maybe tegra is just early stage of bringing 500 series into android :p

so, we can play WOW from our android :D

Guest said:

For people who are still stuck in the timewarp where GPUs rulled the world, here is a very good explanation of why NV cares so much about Tegra, tablets, etc.

"Interestingly, ARM CPUs are also becoming a major focus for Nvidia with its multi-core Tegra platforms. In fact, in September this year, Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang predicted that the mobile chip business would grow to ten times its current size by 2015, valuing it at $20 billion. Comparatively, Huang said that the GPU industry would only grow by 75 per cent to $7 billion in the same time. With Microsoft and Nvidia taking ARM processors very seriously indeed, there could potentially be the beginnings of some major changes to our industry in 2012."

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

...even Radeon wiping the floor with 7000 series and make a lot of money.

You can forget about that part of the exercise. A HD 6970's BoM (Bill of Materials - manufacturing cost) is a little under $US 200. Factor in a more expensive GPU (28nm wafer cost vs 40nm wafer cost), and another gigabyte of GDDR5 (likely of the much more expensive 7Gb variety)...then factor in shipping, packaging, accessory bundle, AIB partner profit (greater than AMD's since they have to carry the warranty), and etail/retail profit...and AMD would need to sell many millions of the top-end cards to make an impact in the balance sheet. Enthusiast gaming graphics cards form a very small percentage of revenue/profit.

Staff
Julio Franco Julio Franco, TechSpot Editor, said:

Nvidia sent in an update on what they announced, it's all Tegra as Matt pointed out on his coverage:

* New $249 Asus tablet, equipped with a quad-core Tegra 3 mobile processor running Android's Ice Cream Sandwich operating system.

* Asus's Transformer Prime tablet, with Tegra 3, is available immediately with Ice Cream Sandwich. Earlier versions can be updated over the air.

* Tegra 3, by using the Splashtop app, can remotely connect to a GeForce GTX-based gaming PC and play the world's most sophisticated titles like Skyrim.

* The Tegra 3 processor sports three innovations:

o A fifth ninja core, which draws very little power and is able to run background and ordinary tasks with little impact on battery life

o PRISM, a power-saving backlight technology that can cut backlight power consumption by up to 40 percent by modulating the backlight per pixel, frame and scene.

o DirectTouch, which offloads much of the touch panel's processing to just one of the CPU cores, enabling 6x faster touch processing, lower costs and lower power consumption.

* Tegra 3 is now powering some of the world's best cars, including three being shown at CES by NVIDIA: the Tesla 3 sedan, the Audi A7 and the new Lamborghini Aventador.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

Nvidia sent in an update on what they announced, it's all Tegra as Matt pointed out on his coverage:...

Hardly surprising- aside from Tegra, the only hardware product of interest in the consumer space from Nvidia would be Kepler. I doubt that it's quite ready for primetime, and even if it were it's aimed at the HD 7950 and not likely to threaten the HD 7970's status as numero uno.

As an aside Obrovsky (he of the supposed fake, but ultimately, reliable Bulldozer pre-launch performance benches) has a GK104 specifications teaser posted.

* Tegra 3 is now powering some of the world's best cars, including three being shown at CES by NVIDIA: the Tesla 3 sedan, the Audi A7 and the new Lamborghini Aventador.

I think I'll stick with a conventional gasoline four-stroke engine until the new silicon powered drivetrain has gained some maturity.

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