NVIDIA Attacks the Low-Cost Tablet Conundrum With KAI

While primo tablets still mostly run in the $400-plus range, it’s not as though low-cost tablets haven’t proliferated rapidly--it’s just that they’re often not very good. Hitting lower price points is not easy, although there have been a few solid tablets around the $200-$250 range. For consumers, that’s all well and good, but even manufacturers that have managed to sell decent tablets at that price point aren’t necessarily making a lot (or any) money on the devices.

NVIDIA is taking a crack at the problem with KAI, tablet reference platform based on the Tegra 3 processor that an NVIDIA blog post calls “a recipe that tablet makers can reference when they’re designing and building low cost, quad-core Android tablets targeted at the $199 price point.”

The basic “recipe” includes a Tegra 3 quad-core chip; a memory controller that is compatible with DDR3L memory; DirectTouch, PRISM, and other similar system innovations; and “components integrated from leaders in the tablet ecosystem”. From there, manufacturers have options, including changing the form factor from the standard 7 inches to several other sizes and resolutions.

The Tegra 3's 4-plus-1 architecture

Obviously, the idea is that just about anything that runs on the mighty Tegra 3 chip should be pretty decent. Assuming the rest of the components and accompanying software are any good, NVIDIA just may be onto something here.