CHIP DESIGNER Nvidia has demonstrated its Tegra 4i chip running a 150Mbit/s wireless connection over an advanced Long Term Evolution (LTE) network.
Nvidia's Tegra 4i chip is the firm's most important product of 2013. It's aimed at middle of the road smartphones and integrates software defined radio that eliminates the need for a hardware baseband chip. The firm has now demonstrated, through a software update, that its Tegra 4i chip can support Category 4 LTE connections with a bandwidth of up to 150Mbit/s.
Nvidia had previously demonstrated 100Mbit/s LTE connections but said that through a software update, the same chip can now support 150Mbit/s LTE connections. The firm also wasted no time in touting other advantages over traditional silicon based baseband radios such as the units sold by Qualcomm, by saying that not only can the radio be updated without the need for new hardware, but the silicon footprint of the software defined radio is 40 percent less than traditional radios.
Nvidia added that its software defined radio technology, which the firm acquired as part of its purchase of British outfit Icera, supports more previous technologies such as 2G and 3G. Both Intel and Nvidia are heavily promoting software defined radio as a way to one-up vendors like Qualcomm, which does a roaring trade in both application processors and baseband radio chips.
Nvidia's demonstration was on a simulated LTE Category 4 network, as mobile operators have yet to deploy such a network. The firm has previously said that the first Tegra 4i devices will appear towards the end of the year and should start appearing in large numbers during the first quarter of 2014. µ