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nVidia to enter CPU market?

nVidia to enter CPU market?

As bizarre as it sounds nVidia may be entering into the processor market – at least according to Broadpoint AmTech analyst Doug Freedman. He says that nVidia could be forced into the CPU marketplace by necessity to help maintain their GPU and chipset revenue.

"We believe Nvidia could (sooner rather than later) enter the x86 CPU business, with investor response largely a function of the market share opportunity given the CPU roadmap range," Freedman said. "Nvidia will likely target mainstream and below performance, and NOT leading core-i7 like levels."

As we all know nVidia are late to market with DX11 parts when compared to leading competitor AMD and they are also in an ongoing battle right now with Intel over development of the nForce chipset range. This chipset revenue according to Freedman accounts for almost 30 percent of nVidia’s sales.

There is also the fact that there is a generalised movement towards CPU and GPU merging – Intel have Larrabee on the horizon which while initially only GPU based will incorporate a mixed structure at a later date. AMD have Fusion forthcoming which will be launched in the second half of 2010.

Analyst Freedman has suggested that Nvidia would develop the CPU in house since AMD and Intel own most of the available X86 patents.

Interesting times ahead indeed but we fail to see how Nvidia could be truly competitive with AMD or Intel, especially in the short term when they need to make up for lost revenue.

Allan Campbell: Heaven Media

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Stuart Davidson

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