Feb 22 AT 10:34 PM Taylor Wimberly 24 Comments

4-PLUS-1, The 5th CPU core formerly known as Ninja


Ninja core. Stealth core. Companion core. Veriable symmetric multiprocessing. Those are all phrases that NVIDIA has used to describe their 5th processing core in Tegra 3. And to celebrate the 5th core, NVIDIA has now announced a 5th name, “4-PLUS-1.”

Four high performance CPU cores for premium experiences, plus one low-power CPU core to save battery life.

I am often entertained by the messaging that comes from marketing and public relations teams, and this is no exception. At the same time, I still understand what NVIDIA is trying to accomplish. Their customers wanted an easy to understand name they could put on a box that represents the value of Tegra 3′s 5th low-power CPU core and it doesn’t get much simpler than 4-PLUS-1.

We’ve already covered the benefits of Tegra 3, so I won’t dive into that again. For the real technical folks out there, NVIDIA also updated their whitepaper on variable symmetric multiprocessing. If you want the simple version of how multi-core processors extend battery life, just check out the video below.

Let us know what you think about the new 4-PLUS-1 branding in the comments below.

Source: NVIDIA

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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  • Bryan Stoner

    I like it~ Nice one Nvidia XD

    • Jeff Pan

      This would be the best available for gaming!

      • http://mihai.discuta-liber.com/ tmihai20

        Until we don’t see at least a prototype, I can only say it sounds good. I only wish I was in Spain for the MWC. Since TI already dropped the ball on the quad-core embedded chipsets, this announcement was somehow expected, I didn’t hear about this chipset from Nvidia for some time now. It’s time they gain their spotlight.

  • AsakuraZero

    i stay with Nvidia Ninja core technology, i find it catchy and since they make video cards for gaming its pretty fitting for them

    • WlfHart

      Ninja Core Definitely better name. Not sure why all these companies keep changing their tech names (HTC anyone?)

  • Max.Steel

    While Tegra 2 was certainly a good offering, releasing it without optimizing the platform left a bad taste in people’s mouths. It took a quad-core Tegra 2 to (almost) match the performance single core A5. Tegra is the worst of all the ARM chips. Main reason why is because it’s cheap. Hell even Chinese knockoff chips outperformed the Tegra. I hope that nVidia doesn’t do the same with this newer chipset.

    • AsakuraZero

      the lack of optimization its not the chip is the fucking driver, looks like you never tried to run Nvidia cards in Linux enviorment, to summary it…. its fucking horrible, just HORRIBLE, no shit tegra 2 had that kind of launch but the transformer and even the atrx performs pretty well.

      calling a chip CHEAP and to get to the 1.7ghz of overclock its wrong, the architecture is as stable as the exynos on that scenario..

      but well just my 2 cents

  • ranwanimator

    Semantics. I personally liked Ninja core. I think it spoke better to the nerd demographic who are actually going to care that the Tegra 3 has 5 cores. 4 PLUS 1 feels weak and not very well thought out. Maybe I’ll change my mind when I see the typography they come up with to brand 4 PLUS 1.

  • YMS123

    They can call it whatever the heck they want, just sell me a phone with it already!
    (no, I can’t wait till the MWC)

  • classic_hero

    As long as it saves battery life I don’t care what they call it

  • spazby

    Ninja core it is

  • honourbound68

    this is going to be an exciting time. between nvidia, qualcomm, samsung, intel and even amd, the future of mobile computing will be bright. i can’t wait to see which soc will be last one standing at the end.

  • Nathan D.

    Who doesn’t love ninjas =D

  • ArticulateFool

    Beware of the ninjas! I like the name ninja core. It’s very applicable.

  • Oskar Wismierski

    It’s all about the Ninja core

  • Maarten tistdrive

    Companion core?
    must be great at Portal

  • BigCiX

    What’s up my ninja!

  • http://www.infotainmentempire.com pekosROB

    Just call it Quentin.

  • Trinhbo

    Ninja is a cool nickname but us ‘nerds’ are a very small minority of consumers. We already know the benefits of the Tegra 3 architecture.

    I like the new name branding. It’s simple and effective and quickly summarizes it for the average person.

  • koorsr

    While ninja core sounds cool, 4-PLUS-1 makes it seem like there are 5 cores which to a regular consumer would make it seem like it’s better than a 4 core processor. It might make it a little easier for the sales people to explain than ninja core as well because it’s pretty self-explanatory.

  • Hall Lo

    No matter what you named it, NVIDIA, i still love it! xD

  • aranea

    4-plus-1 may be clearer but Ninja is catchier. I’m excited about products with this new CPU. I hope the tablets come out fast because I need to buy one in a couple of months.

  • Leo Young

    Very nice demo. We all want extended battery life. I appreciate the fact that you don’t need to do anything to use it – completely background.

    I wonder if other manufacturers will pick this up?