nVidia CEO talks tablets, Android, and the future of computing.
It’s easy to see that the Android community is excited about tablets. With devices like the Samsung Galaxy Tab and the Archos 10.1 hitting shelves, the signal to noise ratio regarding tablets has become deafening. The army is coming, and for the most part it seems the good ones are being powered by the mighty nVidia Tegra 2. This dual-core graphics ready masterpiece seems to have everyone’s eye, and it’s not hard to see why from my seat. At their weakest, they have the potential to top anything on the current mobile market, and long-term the Tegra 2 has the potential to continue to dominate. However, that’s from my seat. What about nVidia? How do they feel about this spike in interest? Brooke Crothers of Cnet got a few minutes with CEO Jen-Hsun Huang, and here’s what I got from it.
“This isn’t a fad. Everybody’s building tablets because it’s just so important. Car companies are working on tablets, consumer electronics companies are working on tablets, computer companies are working on tablets, and communications companies are working on tablets. The medical industry is working on tablets,” he said during the earnings conference call. “I don’t remember in the history of computing [when] a singular device is being worked on by all of the industry.”
Huang continues to talk about the importance of a well groomed OS to go alongside their equipment, and even slamming the Galaxy Tab in saying that “a tablet is not a large phone.” in reference to it’s running Android 2.3, instead of the next version of Android. While pretty tight lipped about his experience with this next version, Huang did go on to say that tablets that wait and use a Tegra 2 will have “the benefit of higher performance and much, much better multitasking and better graphics.” for their patience.
While the news that Android’s future will be one that keeps innovation alive is plenty exciting for me, what continued to keep me on the edge of my seat was Huang’s seemingly laptop-less future scape. This rush of tablets, according to Huang, could pose a serious threat to the mobile computing world that we know now, and replace it with one where the tablet is what we use when not at our desktops.
We’ve seen reports where netbook and laptop sales had been wavering, and this Tegra 2 filled futureworld of Huang’s seems to offer devices that could feasibly replace the laptop for many users, so for this writer that future doesn’t seem too off key. Plus, nVidia has been a major player in the computing world for years, and has had the opportunity to see the technology market from a rather unique perspective, so perhaps we really are nearing that time where we replace that netbook or laptop with one of the many slabs of awesome around the corner. I suppose only time will tell.