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Nvidia takes a third of the Android tablet market with its Tegra 2 chip

Intel barely registers
Wed Aug 31 2011, 20:00

CHIP DESIGNER Nvidia has managed to gain a third of the Android tablet market, according to analyst outfit Strategy Analytics.

Nvidia has scored several production wins with its Tegra 2 chip, appearing in Motorola's Xoom, Samsung's Galaxy Tab, Dell's Streak 7, LG's Optimus Pad and Asus' Eee Pad Transformer. Strategy Analytics claims that by virtue of being in just about every Android tablet worth having, Nvidia has secured a 34.4 per cent share of the non-Ipad tablet market in the first quarter of 2011.

According to Strategy Analytics the good times for Nvidia will continue to roll, with its market share of Android tablets predicted to grow to 48.6 per cent in the second quarter of 2011.

To highlight just how much work Intel has to do, apparently x86 processors accounted for less than five per cent of the total tablet market share. Intel is hoping that its Atom chip will finally break into tablets later this year and it is working to push on in 2012 with its Tri-gate process node that promises to deliver a much needed decrease in power consumption.

Nvidia had a tough time with its first Tegra chip failing to appear in any major device, however there is no doubt that the company has impressed with its Tegra 2 chip. When it appeared in the Motorola Xoom not only was it visually fast, it was the launch device for Google's Android 3.0.

At Mobile World Congress Nvidia showed off a quad-core version of its Tegra chip, codenamed Kal-el. It is expected that Kal-el tablets will be available next year, and given the wins Nvidia has mustered with the Tegra 2, it is looking like Nvidia might have made the right choice to get out of the embedded graphics market.

It's not all sweetness and light, however. Nvidia's market share figures are only for non-Ipad tablets and it's no secret that Apple's Ipad is the most popular tablet by a country mile. Strategy Analytics pegs Apple's market share at 61 per cent, meaning that Nvidia essentially has a third of the remaining 39 per cent.

Still, Intel would give its right ARM for market share like that in tablets. µ


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