Samsung placed a major order for Nvidia's Tegra 2 processor, according to a research note from an analyst, a possible indication of Nvidia's growing stature in the mobile market.
According to a research note from Citigroup's Glen Yeung, Samsung has "placed a sizeable order with Nvidia for Tegra 2 chips in the first half of 2011, geared for both tablets and smartphones." The purchase could be as much as $250 million to $350 million, the report said. The report also indicated that Tegra 2 is the "reference design" for Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) "Honeycomb" version of Android, 3.0, which is reportedly designed for tablets as well as smartphones.
A Samsung spokesman declined to comment and an Nvidia spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Nvidia, which has been a major force in PC graphics chips but has toiled in the shadow of Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) and Texas Instruments for design wins in high-end mobile devices, appears poised for a breakout year in 2011. Andy Rubin, Google's vice president of engineering and Android's architect, demonstrated an Android tablet from Motorola (NYSE:MOT) earlier this month running on an Nvidia chipset.
Nvidia also is rumored to be behind LG's forthcoming Android tablet. Additionally, other recent rumors point to Acer, Asustek and Toshiba as additional potential Nvidia tablet customers.
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