Four months ago NVIDIA announced the acquisition of Icera, a baseband solution provider. Icera's technology didn't make it into any smartphones but it did have some success in the USB modem market. The obvious impteus for the acquisition was to eventually integrate Icera basebands into NVIDIA Tegra SoCs, providing a "single chip" solution for those customers who want it. Currently Qualcomm is the only major SoC player to offer an application processor with integrated baseband with its Snapdragon SoC.

After the acquisition was announced NVIDIA wouldn't commit to any timeframe for integrating Icera's technology, even going as far as to say that many customers weren't demanding that level of integration at this point. Yesterday NVIDIA's CEO, Jen-Hsun Huang confirmed that we'd see a mainstream Tegra offering with an integrated "3G/4G" baseband from Icera in 2012 alongside its Wayne SoC. This integrated SoC is codenamed Grey. Xbit Labs was the first to report on the story and we just confirmed it with NVIDIA.

Grey will coexist with Wayne. Jen-Hsun referred to Grey as being able to address the "majority of the smartphone market" indicating that it may be a smaller design than Wayne. NVIDIA has yet to confirm the architecture behind Wayne (or Grey) at this point, but we can only assume that by 2012 it'll be time for NVIDIA to shift to Cortex A15 at 28nm. 

Source: Xbit Labs

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  • Black1969ta - Saturday, September 10, 2011 - link

    To fairly compare different generations of processors you need to at least compare equal clockspeeds and the 6850 is a 3.0Ghz while the i7-2600k is a 3.4 that turbo's up to 3.8Ghz so that immediately skews your (facts) 10-30% power savings at a 13-23% clock increase, all while powering 2 more cores is very impressive, not to mention the clock-for-clock improvements in work accomplished allowing the new generation to return to idle state sooner, and the gate improvements reducing idle leakage.

    And where has Nvidia changed their story on Kal-El's performance?
    link please, I thought the initial reports of 5x GPU performance was made after the Alpha Silicon was already spun and working processors were already demoing?
  • extide - Sunday, September 11, 2011 - link

    That benchmark DOES take clock speed into account and they are both ran at 3.0GHz.

    However, it does NOT take power consumption into account. Total watt/hours for a sandy bridge to do the same task will ALSO be ~30% lower. So its 30% faster when using 30% less power.

    When these other guys start making 2-5w chips, and if Intel pulls off a good Atom re-roll in 2013 I think it will be a heck of a battle and will def be fun to watch :)
  • tipoo - Monday, September 12, 2011 - link

    *Puts on sceptical face*

    Currently a Core 2 Duo is magnitudes more powerful than ARM SoC's, even assuming their 5x speed increase is true I don't think it would quite reach that level.

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