Nvidia has been struggling in the mobile processor space, in the past two years the Tegra line has went from a prominent brand to universally unknown, with almost every OEM partner putting Qualcomm’s Snapdragon technology inside their smartphones.
The Tegra K1 is a new move in the space, to completely change what the mobile should be capable of doing. Nvidia’s CEO Jen-Hsun Huang said this is a “super-chip” and he isn’t wrong, as the Tegra K1 has 192 cores and can run desktop applications and games.
Inside the Tegra K1 is Kepler architecture, which Nvidia previously designed for 3D graphics on desktop games. To really bring this idea to life, Nvidia has announced games made on the Unreal Engine 4 by Epic Games can run on the Tegra K1 mobile chip.
Games running on the Unreal Engine 4 have not been released yet, but titles such as Fable Legends and all of Square Enix’s future titles will run the engine. The previous Unreal Engine powered games like Bioshock Infinite, Gears of War, Mass Effect and Tom Clancy and we believe the Tegra K1 will be able to run those titles just as good.
This is a huge push by Nvidia to create a true desktop-class processor for mobile and it shows how much innovative drive Nvidia has had, after two years of bad sales on their Tegra line. The question is can Nvidia make the Tegra K1 as cheap as the Snapdragon 805 and get partners interested.
Being able to play the highest quality console and PC games on Android would be an awesome experience and would compliment the rise of Android gaming consoles, from companies like Ouya and GameStick.
What Nvidia needs to do now is get as many Android OEM partners invested in the Tegra K1, Qualcomm is in a dominant position at the moment, but it can easily be thrown off the ladder if the Tegra K1 becomes the best performer.