Nvidia to unveil graphics chip for laptops at Comdex

Nvidia is being hush-hush about the details of its announcement set for Sunday, November 12 at Comdex in Las Vegas. Nvidia's Comdex invite offers only that the company will announce a "new GPU (graphics processing unit) that will modernise the mobile market."

Nvidia is expanding into the portable market where the major players are ATI Technologies, Trident Microsystems and NeoMagic, said Peter Glaskowsky, an analyst with MicroDesign Resources. ATI holds more than 50 per cent of the mobile graphics chip market.

"I think it is merely the first in a series of chips that will be coming from Nvidia," Glaskowsky said.

Based on existing Nvidia chip designs, Glaskowsky suggests it will be a graphics chip that will require a separate memory chip and likely will be targeted at larger notebooks. It would not be too difficult for Nvidia to adapt one of its existing graphics chips for the mobile market, Glaskowsky said.

"The major things that the mobile market cares about are performance and capabilities," he said. "That is what people care about in the desktop market. Power consumption is also a factor in the mobile market."

Lowering power consumption with an existing chip design can be done by lowering clock speeds or utilising newer technologies, Glaskowsky said.

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