Having gained major marketplace and mindshare traction already this year with their Tegra 2 dual-core chipsets, NVIDIA this morning announced a new addition to their mobile processor portfolio. The Silicon Valley company says it plans to acquire Icera, a maker of baseband processors for 3G/4G mobile devices. The $367 million deal is expected to be completed in 30 days, and will give NVIDIA the ability to offer OEM partners both the application (NVIDIA) and baseband (Icera) processors.
In other words, NVIDIA’s partners will be able to get Tegra-powered devices to market even faster after this merger. And NVIDIA’s revenues on each Tegra device produced should grow significantly once their able to provide both of the main processors used in mobile devices. I reached out to NVIDIA for comment, and they confirmed that the deal shouldn’t have any impact on either company’s current product roadmaps, including the quad-core “Kal-El” chipsets NVIDIA announced at MWC in February.
“No impact at all,” an NVIDIA spokesperson said. “This doesn’t change any of our current plans nor does it change any of Icera’s current plans. We’ll have a broader product set to offer customers.” More company thoughts on the deal can be found on the NVIDIA blog.
NVIDIA kicked the year off with the debut of a slew of Tegra 2 devices at CES, including the Motorola Xoom tablet and LG Optimus G2x smartphone, both of which are now shipping globally. The following month at Mobile World Congress, NVIDIA partners debuted more Tegra 2-powered devices, and the company itself announced the aforementioned quad-core mobile roadmap. All Tegra 2 products to date run Google’s Android operating system, and NVIDIA has also announced partnerships with Audi, BMW and Tesla to use Tegra products in the automotive space.
Given the recent news that NVIDIA lost market share to rivals AMD and Intel in the GPU space, it makes sense for the company to put more muscle behind its newly emerged and fast-growing presence as a player in the mobile market. Do any of you currently own an NVIDIA-powered mobile devices, or desktops/laptops with their GPUs in them? Satisfied with their performance? Or even have thoughts on the chipmaker’s future – is mobile where it’s at for NVIDIA?