What you need to know
- NVIDIA is partnering with MediaTek for a new reference line of laptops.
- This is the first big project for NVIDIA after its acquisition of ARM Limited last year.
- These laptops are to be designed for Chromium, Linux, and NVIDIA SDKs.
Late in 2020, NVIDIA shocked the world by announcing its acquisition of ARM Limited, but until now, we had no real idea of what to expect from this. Sure, NVIDIA is likely to tap ARM to create some new chipsets, but there was also the potential for creating new and innovative graphics cards for desktops and laptops. Today, NVIDIA announced (via XDA Developers) that it is working with MediaTek to "create a new class of notebooks powered by an Arm-based CPU alongside an NVIDIA RTX GPU".
This move is only logical considering that ARM processors are going to be skyrocketing even more in popularity with PC makers. Microsoft was one of the first on the scene, but since Apple's introduction of the M1 MacBook Air, PC users are wondering when they'll be able to take advantage of the speed gains offered by ARM.
But instead of being put to use with the likes of Windows, as some may have expected, it seems that's not the case. At least not yet. NVIDIA continued to detail its plans by stating that the reference laptops being developed will support Chromium, Linux, and NVIDIA SDKs. Yes, you read that right. An NVIDIA GPU could be coming to a Chromebook near you, paired with an ultra-fast ARM processor.
Using an ARM processor in a Chromebook makes all of the sense in the world, as these budget-friendly laptops are lightweight and portable. Plus, some of them are already more powerful than some of the best laptops, but that power could be increased with the implemenation of an NVIDIA RTX graphics card. What we aren't sure of just yet is what these reference laptops will look like, nor do we know exactly how well MediaTek's chips will perform.
Can you imagine being able looking for the best Chromebooks and being able to buy one that has a built-in NVIDIA GPU? The gaming performance would be off-the-charts, and you would be able to use the Chromebook for everything from playing your favorite games to actually using it for video editing and more. The possibilities are endless with this new MediaTek partnership, but now we just have to paly the waiting game to see how things actually turn out.
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Andrew Myrick is a Senior Editor at Android Central. He enjoys everything to do with technology, including tablets, smartphones, and everything in between. Perhaps his favorite past-time is collecting different headphones, even if they all end up in the same drawer.