It's been rumored for some time that NVIDIA had lost interest in the mobile phone business, and that's something company co-founder and CEO Jen-Hsun Huang confirmed during his company's presentation at Computex.
None of this is much of a surprise, as the company's Tegra SoC hasn't found itself inside of a commercially successful smartphone, but this confirmation is a bit sobering nonetheless. NVIDIA has what it takes to create an incredible smartphone SoC, and has proven that it can even build great devices surrounding those SoCs. But at the end of the day, the ROI for that particular venture is apparently not worth it.
NVIDIA's Jen-Hsun Huang showing off SHIELD Android TV
When questioned about his company's interest in smartphones, Huang quipped, "we are no longer interested in that market," and continued, "Anybody can build smartphones, and we're happy to enjoy these devices, but we'll let someone else build them".
At this point, NVIDIA must see Tegra's future wrapped around all things automotive, either with autonomous driving or powering entertainment systems. But what does this mean for NVIDIA's tablets and TV set-top boxes? It's hard to say. NVIDIA is very proud of its SHIELD Android TV (our review), so it would seem a bit hasty to pull out of that market so quickly, especially when you consider the fact that the company backs the device with GeForce NOW, a subscription-based cloud gaming service.
It might be safe to guess that SHIELD is going nowhere, as it targets a different audience than smartphones, and all things considered, the series has proven successful.
Whatever happens on the SHIELD side, SoC manufacturers are sure to be glad that NVIDIA has officially bowed out of the smartphone market - that's just one less competitor to worry about.