Nvidia Tegra 4i Hits 150 Mbps in Demo, Ready for LTE Advanced and AT&T

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For Nvidia to get back in the smartphone race against Qualcomm, it needs a platform that’s future proof. And that’s exactly what the Tegra 4i promises. Shown here at CTIA 2013 in Las Vegas, the mobile processor with integrated LTE modem offered 150 Mbps data speeds during a demo, thanks to a software upgrade that supports Cat 4 LTE-Advanced technology. 

Because it features a software-defined radio, Nvidia says its chip will be ready to battle Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 800 processor come Q1 2014. Plus, the Tegra 4i chip is 40 percent smaller than competing solutions, which should result in better efficiency and (hopefully) longer battery life.

MORE: 10 Best Android Smartphones

Nvidia Tegra 4i 150 Mbps

Nvidia’s demo consisted of its Phoenix reference design Android phone connected to an Anritsu terminal that measures throughput. Carriers won’t be delivering 150 Mbps speeds, of course, but Tegra 4i will be ready for carrier aggregation of radio channels, which will in increase data rates while reducing latency. 

Tegra 4i’s modem is multi-mode, which means it’s backward compatible with LTE Cat 3 (up to 100 Mbps), 3G, and 2G. In other words, you won’t be out of luck when you find yourself outside of LTE range.

Nvidia Tegra 4i Phoenix

Nvidia also showed us its Phoenix phone with Tegra 4i running on a live AT&T LTE network, including voice calls and video streaming. The device had a bit of trouble displaying videos in landscape mode at first, but Nvidia assured us this was due to early software.

The Tegra 4i platform has a chance to make some waves in the mobile market, but Q1 2014 is a long time from now. We look forward to seeing which smartphone makers Nvidia wins over.

AUTHOR BIO
Mark Spoonauer
Mark Spoonauer
Responsible for the editorial vision for Laptopmag.com, Mark Spoonauer has been Editor in Chief of LAPTOP since 2003 and has covered technology for nearly 15 years. Mark speaks at key tech industry events and makes regular media appearances on CNBC, Fox and CNN. Mark was previously reviews editor at Mobile Computing, and his work has appeared in Wired, Popular Science and Inc.
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