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Superphones are go, says Nvidia CEO

Not tablets, nor smartphones, but somewhere in the middle lies the virtue of the superphone, suggested Jen-Hsun Huang in a press conference with Taiwanese media.

Digitimes reports that the Nvidia CEO swore the ARM oath and paved the way for the introduction of a new class of 'Superphone' devices, somewhat smaller than tablets yet more powerful than your classic smartphone. We're not quite sure where the line is drawn... considering Nvidia is all about the visuals; we'd be betting it's a screen-size thing because that's where it has its assets.

Amongst the features these devices will have, are: "Basic internet connectivity, functionality to satisfy multimedia needs and runs on Android." said Huang. Basically an iPhone sans the Apple logo and using whatever mobile OS is trendy at the time.

Of course this is a build-up to Motorola's next big Droid launch (rumoured to be called T2) that is taking place soon. This will be the first Tegra 2 device to make it to market, and Nvidia is playing the cards in its hand.

Tegra, the first, was a first attempt at an ARM SoC that scored very few design wins - all of them relatively weak successes if you compare them to competing designs - most notable of which were the Microsoft KIN phones and the Zune HD. However Nvidia is hell-bent on making Tegra 2 a success with partners and will have them think the only competing product to Apple's iPhone and iPad is the Nvidia solution.

Huang expects more Tegra 2 designs to be launched during the course of 2011, as the dual-core version of the SoC becomes available.

We do have to point out that Nokia tried superphones for a few years, and was even quite successful at it, but it is precisely the success of the smartphone, tablet and netbook that is taking away the superphone market from Nokia.