When NVIDIA let some performance information loose on its Tegra 4 processor earlier this week, it seemed like it had the goods to ride-high for the rest of the year. The numbers we saw were down-right impressive – some, about 5x that of Tegra 3. Could the competition possibly compete? Well, if you ask Qualcomm, absolutely. In fact, it believes that where Tegra 4 is concerned, it could “beat it easily“.
Whew, those be fighting words. They came from Qualcomm’s Senior VP of Product Management Raj Talluri, who also believes his company has a major edge because its flagship product, Snapdragon 800, is “so much more integrated” on account of the fact that it includes an LTE modem built right in. By contrast, NVIDIA’s Tegra 4i shares the same design, but performance-wise and $$$-wise, it’s not going head-to-head with Qualcomm’s top-shelf offering.
|Tegra 4||Snapdragon 800|
|CPU||Quad-Core Cortex-A15, 1.9GHz|
L1: 32+32KB, L2:1MB
|Quad-Core Krait 400, 2.3GHz|
L1: 16+16KB, L2: 2MB
|GPU||72 Tegra Cores, 96 GFLOPS||Adreno 330, Unknown GFLOPS|
|Memory||32-bit LPDDR3 1866MHz||32-bit LPDDR3 800MHz|
Based on specs alone (which are rumored for the most-part on Snapdragon’s side), it seems that Qualcomm could beat out NVIDIA on the CPU front. Krait 400 is built similarly to Cortex-A15, so we’d suspect that the additional 400MHz on the CPU is all that’s needed to make that happen. On the GPU side, it seems likely that NVIDIA will have the upper-hand, unless Qualcomm also manages to quadruple (or more) its graphical performance in a single generation step.
It’s not clear when the first Snapdragon 800 phones will first hit the market, but we assume it’ll come close to Tegra 4’s; Q2 and Q3. It might take a little while longer before we find out who’s really going to come out on top.