While the HTC One running on Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 600 SoC may be one of the most powerful Android devices expected to hit store shelves in March, NVIDIA is looking to disrupt the smartphone segment with its new Tegra 4 processor. Originally introduced at CES back in January, the quad-core A15 Tegra 4 with its 72 GPU cores is now operational inside NVIDIA’s new reference design tablet and phone (aka the Phoenix). While the Phoenix is not quite ready for daily use, NVIDIA is allowing members of the press to run benchmark tests on its Tegra 4 reference tablet.
To be clear, NVIDIA’s reference devices will most likely never be available for the general public, and NVIDIA is using them simply to show off the power of its Tegra 4 chip. We do not know if any additional tweaking has been done to the software to boost benchmark scores, but we can imagine that there will be slight variations to the numbers once benchmarks are run on production devices.
Though Tegra 4 powered devices are still 4-6 months away, the benchmark scores above clearly show that NVIDIA’s new processor is more than capable of standing up against Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 600 and completely outclasses devices powered by Tegra 3.
Unthrottled power is great when you want to enjoy 3D games or browse the web. But NVIDIA is sure to point out that the Tegra 4 also bests its main competitor when it comes to battery life. The chart below shows that the Tegra 4 uses significantly less power than Qualcomm’s Snapdragon S4 Pro during video recording/playback, browsing the web, audio playback and while in standby mode. According to NVIDIA’s calculations, a Tegra 4 powered device would be able to outlast the HTC Droid DNA by 2.4 hours in a video playback test if both devices were equipped with the same 2,500 mAh battery.
NVIDIA is doing an amazing job promoting the new Tegra 4, but we’ll have to wait and see if any of the big players choose to outfit their upcoming devices with the new chip. NVIDIA has had moderate success getting the Tegra 3 inside some of the latest Android tablets, but there are still very few Tegra-powered Android phones on the market.
Are you willing to wait things out to get your hands on a Tegra 4 powered device? Or will you buy the upcoming HTC and Samsung flagship phones using Qualcomm’s integrated Snapdragon 600 SoC?