Zune HD and Tegra come out of the closet

Subject: Mobile | August 19, 2009 - 03:04 PM |
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Sure, we told you about the news of the Tegra being the powerhouse behind the upcoming Zune HD from Microsoft, but apparently NVIDIA wanted to make a press release about it anyway.  We also have known about the various technologies and processors in the tiny chip since June of 2008 - we posted an overview of the SoC that you should definitely be checking out.

With the release date just around the corner (Sept 15th) and the prices settled on (16GB: $219.99 and 32 GB: $289.99), NVIDIA is now able to toot its own horn about the whole thing:

The Zune HD player, which Microsoft recently announced is available for preorder, is the first portable media player to combine HD-compatible video1, HD Radio receiver, full-screen Internet browsing, an organic light emitting diode touch screen, and Wi-Fi. These features will connect consumers to a whole new world of entertainment, while delivering excellent battery life. Working closely with Microsoft and optimizing the Tegra processor, NVIDIA has played an important role in helping to bring the next-generation Zune HD portable digital media player to market.

“Tegra provides the multimedia muscle in Zune HD,” said Michael Rayfield, general manager of NVIDIA’s mobile business. “Users will love the device’s new design, amazing multimedia features and HD video out capability. Zune HD is a must-have for anyone looking for the best portable digital media player on the market.”

The Tegra chip uses eight independent processors to balance performance and power consumption in the Zune HD:


The
Tegra is certainly impressive when considering the size of the die and
how much functionality it actually encompasses.  SOC's are not exactly
new, but this one is breaking new ground with how integrated all of
this functionality is.

This is definitely the right kind of device for the Tegra to find its way into and we are pretty excited about testing one as they become available.  There are still a lot of questions regarding the functionality of the unit besides playing back music and video (apps, browsing experience, etc) but I think that NVIDIA and Microsoft are going to have a winner on their hands.

SANTA CLARA, CA—AUG. 17, 2009—NVIDIA Corporation today announced that Microsoft’s new Zune HD portable media player is powered by the NVIDIA® Tegra™ processor, which gives it exceptional multimedia capabilities.

The Zune HD player, which Microsoft recently announced is available for preorder, is the first portable media player to combine HD-compatible video1, HD Radio receiver, full-screen Internet browsing, an organic light emitting diode touch screen, and Wi-Fi. These features will connect consumers to a whole new world of entertainment, while delivering excellent battery life. Working closely with Microsoft and optimizing the Tegra processor, NVIDIA has played an important role in helping to bring the next-generation Zune HD portable digital media player to market.

“Tegra provides the multimedia muscle in Zune HD,” said Michael Rayfield, general manager of NVIDIA’s mobile business. “Users will love the device’s new design, amazing multimedia features and HD video out capability. Zune HD is a must-have for anyone looking for the best portable digital media player on the market.”

Key to Tegra’s rich multimedia features are eight independent processors, each designed for a specific class of tasks - among them are an HD video processor, an audio processor, a graphics processor, and two ARM cores. The processors can work together or independently to minimize power consumption. The Microsoft Zune HD2 uses the following NVIDIA Tegra technology to deliver a unique visual experience:

    * an HD video processor dedicated to HD video, providing unprecedented picture quality and ultra-smooth, vivid movie playback with low power consumption

    * an ultra-low power graphics processor for a compelling and intuitive user interface

    * NVIDIA nPower™ technology, which optimizes system power use and enables extended HD video and MP3 playback time

Based on NVIDIA’s decade of graphics leadership, Tegra processor has been engineered over the past five years to bring high performance and low power capabilities to the next generation of mobile computing devices such as portable media players, smartphones, smartbooks, netbooks and tablets. Tegra processor-based devices are delivering the experiences that today’s mobile consumers demand, with HD video playback, always-on HD Internet, and intuitive 3D user interfaces. There are 50 active Tegra processor-based design projects currently in the works today.

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