Offerings include the current Kepler GPU product family as well as the modem technology Nvidia acquired from Icera a few years back.
Jim McGregor, Tirias Research
EETimes (6/18/2013 5:25 PM EDT)
Marking a dramatic shift in business strategy, Nvidia announced today that it will begin licensing current and future GPU and modem technology to other silicon vendors. This includes the current Kepler GPU product family, as well as the modem technology acquired from Icera. Admittedly, this opens up Nivida to competition for the company’s Tegra family of processors from silicon vendors using Nvidia technology. However, it will create opportunities for other silicon vendors to use the technology in targeting other markets and applications not targeted with Tegra.
With the addition of Nvidia licensing GPU technology there are now five major GPU IP licensors, including ARM, DMP, Imagination, and Vivante. However, two of those companies also offer CPU cores--ARM and Imagination with the recent acquisition of MIPS. Theoretically, developing both the CPU and GPU technology should provide and edge for ARM and MIPS, but in the case of GPUs, Nvidia has the advantage of developing some of the most advanced graphics technology that power high performance PCs and workstations. It would stand to reason that AMD, the other major PC and workstation GPU vendor, might also benefit from a similar IP licensing model, which it once did before selling the GPU IP group to Qualcomm, which now refers to the product family as Adreno.
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