At Nvidia's GPU technology conference, CEO Jensen Huang announced that the company is working with industry partners to make its graphics technology more accessible. In particular, Huang mentioned that the company is looking to move its GeForce GPU graphics technology to ARM-based processors that are popular on Chromebooks today.
"We are announcing a partnership with MediaTek to create a reference system and SDK for Chrome OS and Linux PCs," said Huang during his keynote presentation at GTC, highlighting the power efficiency and popularity of ARM processors due to their open licensing model emerged. "The combination of Nvidia GPUs and MediaTek SoCs (systems on a chip) results in excellent PCs and notebooks."
He added that MediaTek is the world's largest SoC manufacturer.
In a presentation slide, Huang and Nvidia stated that MediaTek's Arm SoC would be paired with graphics from the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3000 series, the same ampere-based GPU found in high-end gaming rigs today.
Although Nvidia didn't offer any additional details about the partnership, an ARM-based MediaTek processor coupled with GeForce RTX technology from Nvidia smartphones, tablets, Chromebooks, Linux PCs and even future versions of Windows in ARM can potentially charge. With more graphics power for ARM processors, more games and creative apps could be seen on more devices, operating systems and form factors. This could even make serious Windows gaming on ARM systems a reality.
Nvidia rival AMD also has its sights set on the ARM processor market. AMD is expected to partner with Samsung to potentially bring its Radeon graphics technology to Samsung's ARM-based Exynos processor.
If Nvidia's GeForce GPU – and even AMD's Radeon GPU – moves to ARM, it could potentially disrupt Intel's tight hold on processor space. Apple has already migrated from Intel silicon and has chosen to push its custom ARM-based M1 processors for the Mac, tied to its own graphics solution.
Nvidia's support for ARM should come as no surprise as the company announced the acquisition of ARM from Softbank for $ 40 billion in cash and stock.
Nvidia also announced its ARM-based Grace data center CPU, which will couple the processors with Nvidia's GPUs. Nvidia is pending regulatory approval to acquire UK-based Arm.