Posts Tagged ‘Nvidia’
NVIDIA’s Tesla GPUs are already mainstays in supercomputers that need specialized processing power, and they’re becoming even more important now that the company is launching its first Tesla built for large-scale projects. The new K40 accelerator only has 192 more processing cores than its K20x ancestor (2,880, like the GeForce GTX 780 Ti), but it crunches analytics and science numbers up to 40 percent faster. A jump to 12GB of RAM, meanwhile, helps it handle data sets that are twice as big as before. The K40 is already available in servers from NVIDIA’s partners, and the University of Texas at Austin plans to use it in Maverick, a remote visualization supercomputer that should be up and running by January.
As part of the K40 rollout, NVIDIA has also revealed a partnership with IBM that should bring GPU-boosted supercomputing to enterprise-grade data centers. The two plan on bringing Tesla GPU support to IBM’s Power8-based servers, including both apps and development tools. It’s not clear when the deal will bear fruit, but don’t be surprised if it turbocharges a corporate mainframe near you.
There’s no shortage of tablets available on the market, but it’s surprisingly difficult to find one that performs well for an affordable price. Aside from the Nexus tablets Google has put out over the past two years, we’ve only seen a few products in the $ 200 price range deserving of our praise. Now …
You might say the day is never really done in consumer technology news. Your workday, however, hopefully draws to a close at some point. This is the Daily Roundup on Engadget, a quick peek back at the top headlines for the past 24 hours — all handpicked by the editors here at the site. Click on …
NVIDIA announced Gamestream this morning, an initiative aimed at pairing the company’s GPUs with streaming gaming. Company head Jen-Hsun Huang says the service takes NVIDIA’s GeForce Experience software and pairs it with NVIDIA GPUs to push streaming gaming on not just the company’s Shield handheld, …
It’s called MobileBench: an industry consortium planning to offer “more effective” performance assessments on mobile devices — most likely centered on, but not limited to, Android. Unsurprisingly after recent developments, Samsung joins as a founding member, alongside Broadcom, Huawei, Oppo, and Spreadtrum. While that’s who’s in, who isn’t? Well, both NVIDIA (responsible for the Tegra series of mobile chips) and the increasingly ubiquitous Qualcomm, which makes the Snapdragon mobile processor range. Between them, they power the likes of Microsoft’s Surface series, Amazon’s new Kindle Fire range, not to mention numerous flagship devices from LG, Samsung, Sony and Motorola.
The group gathered for the first time yesterday in Shenzhen, China and outlined how it aims to offer more useful tools for mobile platform designers and “more reliable indices” for assessing user experience. MobileBench plans to establish impartial guidelines and a more sophisticated evaluation methodology for both its first benchmark tool, MobileBench and MobileBench-UX, for testing system-level applications. The benchmarking tool will assess hardware performance, including high-level processes like video and image viewing, camera use and other real-life use cases, with one of the primary aims being result consistency and less deviation between repeated tests. Another app is planned for consumer use in the future, likely similar to the benchmarking apps Engadget uses in its reviews. The bigger question is how much the consortium can achieve without wider adoption inside the industry — it’s apparently “actively seeking” more members.
Source: MobileBench consortium (PDF)
Thanks to another revealing pass through the FCC, we now know more about NVIDIA’s upcoming P1640 mystery tablet, starting with a likely name: the Tegra TAB. An internal photo shows that it’ll likely have a Tegra 4 variant we’ve not seen before, a rather middling 7-inch, 1,280 x 800 IPS display and a 3200 mAh battery. There’s also a manual included that shows an unspecified Jelly Bean flavor of Android, a front HD camera, 5-megapixel rear camera and, interestingly, a stylus — along with apps for it. There’s no other details, and we’re still not sure if NVIDIA will be selling the device itself or through OEMs. Either way, it’s clearly more than just a developer device as previously speculated, so we wouldn’t be shocked to see it on the market imminently.
Don’t act like you don’t want one, because there’s a lot to love about a Tegra 4-powered Android gaming console, especially when it’s an NVIDIA Shield. Our pals at NewEgg were generous enough to dispense with two of its units merely for the pleasure of giving them out to our readers, and that’s exactly what we’re going to do. Head below to our Rafflecopter widget and enter today or tomorrow and you’ll be in the running!
In this decidedly dorky edition of Fly Or Die, yours truly and TC’s resident Canadian Darrell Etherington duke it out over Nvidia’s curious Shield game console and what it means for the future of Android gaming.
In a surprising twist (well, surprising if you haven’t already read his review), Darrell is absolutely smitten with the thing. Honestly, it’s a little hard not to be — we both agree that the Shield is a top-notch piece of kit, with hearty spec sheet, one of the best screens we’ve seen on a mobile device, and a level of fit and finish that puts most standalone Bluetooth controllers for smartphones to shame. Throw in the ability to stream full-blown PC games from computers with the prerequisite graphics cards, you’ve got yourself a awfully compelling little package.
Meanwhile, I’m a little more skeptical of the Shield’s chances. My main beef is that the Android ecosystem doesn’t yet play home to the sorts of games that make a $ 299 portable console like this worth owning. That’s not to say it isn’t going to get there — Android recently vaulted over more traditional rivals like Sony and Nintendo when it came to game revenue so there’s clearly a consumption shift in effect here, but I’d argue there isn’t much in the way of AAA Android games just yet.
In the end, we just had to agree to disagree: Darrell gives it a fly, I give it a die, and all’s right with the world.
A brief aside: as it turns out we couldn’t contain the full brunt of out Shield debate in this video, so the conversation spilled over into this week’s edition of the TechCrunch Droidcast. Tune in to hear us dissect each other’s argument in greater detail.
Asus may have a hand in producing Google’s refreshed Nexus 10 Android tablet, but recent remarks from the company’s chief executive reveal that the Taiwanese company is turning up its nose at the prospect of making another Windows RT-powered tablet entirely.
“It’s not only our opinion,” CEO Jerry Shen remarked to the Wall Street Journal. “The industry sentiment is also that Windows RT has not been successful.”
And how many RT tablet models did Asus need to make before it came to this conclusion? Just one: the VivoTab RT (three models if you include its cellular variants).
Now Asus may not be the most prominent of Microsoft’s RT hardware partners, but in an age where a surprising number of people are buying tablets in lieu of more traditional PCs the snub is a prominent one. The company would apparently rather continue making full-blown Windows 8 tablets and notebooks rather than dump resources into a new RT tablet and hoping people into buying them. And can you blame them? Even Microsoft’s Surface — arguably the Windows RT flagship, mind you — is a dog. Who could forget that Microsoft had to write down a whopping $ 900 million of Surface RT inventory because people just didn’t buy them.
Shen is absolutely right though: Asus is certainly not alone in panning RT as a platform worth building on. HP and Toshiba both had RT devices in development but axed them prior they ever hit the market. HTC reportedly canned a 12-inch Windows RT tablet, despite the fact it’s arguably too invested in Android. Even Nokia, Microsoft’s Windows Phone darling, is said to have dumped Windows RT in favor of full-on Windows 8 for its first (and oft-rumored) tablet in years.
Naturally, not every company has been so quick to distance itself from Windows RT’s controversial embrace. NVIDIA CEO Jen-Hsun Huang confirmed to CNET yesterday that the chipmaker is working closely with Microsoft on a second generation Surface RT tablet, and hopes that the devices will be a “big success”. Of course, that very same day Huang also indirectly pointed to the original Surface as one of the reasons the company’s quarterly Tegra sales revenue is expected to be so wimpy — to hear him say it, NVIDIA doesn’t “expect as much returns on that investment as we originally hoped”. Bummer.
Despite loud claims to the contrary, Microsoft isn’t going to let Windows RT go down without a fight. The problem is that even Microsoft seems unsure of which direction to take here — larger tablets like the Surface RT and its cousins haven’t managed to resonate with consumers. What about working with OEMs to create some smaller, cheaper RT tablets that could theoretically compete with devices like the iPad mini? It’s an intriguing thought… until you remember Microsoft relaxed its own standards to let device manufacturers load up full versions of Windows 8 on a generation of new, smaller tablets. Where is RT supposed to fit in now? That’s the $ 64,000 question, and plenty of OEMs don’t even want to try answering it anymore.
It’s a little-known fact that Google and Asus didn’t produce the original Nexus 7 tablet alone. It was Nvidia’s Kai program that brought down the price of components enough to turn a budget Asus tablet into a Kindle Fire killer. Before the dust had even settled, Nvidia promised more cheap slates. Fast forward to today, though, and Tegra 4 is again failing to make much of a dent in the market. The new Nexus 7 doesn’t include Nvidia’s Tegra 4, as Qualcomm won that bid, and Asus spurned Nvidia for its Fonepad as well, choosing a processor from Intel instead.
What’s a chipmaker to do? It looks like Nvidia might be brokering deals to produce more of its own hardware.