Despite the fact that the company offers truly competitive products, NVIDIA has had a rough time penetrating the mobile market like it wants to - or perhaps needs to. Finding a Tegra-based smartphone requires a fair bit of patience, if you can find one at all for your particular market or carrier. Things are a lot smoother on the tablet side of things, where Tegra's gaming performance is readily sought after - overall though, the situation could be better, and no one knows this better than the company itself.
To help improve upon things, it's being rumored that the company will soon be getting into the business of building reference designs for smartphones and tablets and then contracting those to OEMs in countries like Russia or China. This is a bold move by NVIDIA, because even though it'd be the one to design the devices, its name wouldn't grace them. Instead, it'd be the OEMs, which could easier begin building the devices thanks to NVIDIA's efforts.
From every angle, this looks to be a great idea on NVIDIA's behalf. It'll require up-front and on-going costs, of course, but if the company can penetrate these markets and win people over, it's a relatively small risk that could pay off handsomely.