We’re going to start hearing a lot more about NVIDIA’s Tegra 3 processor in the coming weeks and months. Quad-core will be the new dual-core. Expect wireless carriers and numerous advertisements to start using quad-core processors as a big selling point in upcoming products. NVIDIA wants to educate the public on just what its Tegra 3 processor does. The first step providing a general understanding involves NVIDIA changing the name of the underlying architecture of the Tegra 3 processor.
NVIDIA used to describe the Tegra 3’s four main cores and fifth companion core as variable symmetric multiprocessing. Needless to say, that term doesn’t roll off the tongue. It also doesn’t work too well in marketing copy. The new name for the architecture is called 4-PLUS-1.
Here’s how it works. The four main cores handle the most intensive applications such as gaming and HD video. The fifth companion core takes on lightweight tasks such as email. NVIDIA says this architecture will help Tegra 3 devices achieve better battery performance.
I’m sure there’s a lot more going on, but most commercials only have 30 seconds to get the point across.