Nufront is also
known for its first PC chip based on a dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 CPU
running at 2GHz designed for ultra-thin laptop, “all-in-one” desktop
computers, netbooks and tablet computers. The company’s all-in-one PC
running on ARM got a lot of attention at the Consumer Electronics Show
But the company’s latest focus is squarely on tablets and smartphones.
has been mass-producing NS115, the company’s third-generation apps
processor based on dual core ARM Cortex-A9 processor. Running up to
1.5GHz, the NS115 -- manufactured by TSMC using its 40-nm process
technology -- is integrated with Mali400 multi-core 2D/3D graphic
processor and is capable of 1080P video decoder and 720P video encoder.
claims the NS115’s low power consumption (about 400 mW running at
1.5GHz) as its biggest advantage, compared to competitors. Estimating
that the global tablet market will expand to at least 40 million units
this year, marketing VP Yang said that the company is betting on the
NS115 to garner a sizeable share.
Of course, he is mindful of the tablet market possibly turning into a bloodbath – soon. Single-core ARM Cortex A8-based apps processors – priced at around $10 - $11 per unit by companies like Amlogic, RockChip, ViMicro and AllWinner – dominated the roughly 14 million-unit tablet market last year. In 2012, the adoption of dual-core A9 processors is picking up, said Yang, “although not in high volume yet.”
The new dual-core apps processors come with more features and higher performance, but the price is about the same, he added. Meanwhile, the next big thing — quad-core apps processors — won’t become mainstream until 2013, according to Yang. Nufront has plans to produce quad-cores at TSMC using a 28-nm process technology.
Welcome to Nufront. Rock Yang in front of the company’s reception desk.
Unlike Allwinner and Rockchip, who walks the talk, Nufront has been a marketing company and lives on burning Gov funding, fast, for years. In fact without Gov funding, it's dead years ago. I don't think this is a promising company by any standard.
Nufront is certainly growing bigger than ever before. The issue is whether the company are generating enough revenue to sustain all the engineers they hired in recent years.
But I find the Nufront play in areas that go beyond apps processors interesting. Again, how it pans out will greatly affect the company's future.
It will be difficult for NuFront. As the gateway of Chinese made tablets and provider of custom built tablet for vertical market, we at uPlay Tablet (http://www.uPlayTablet.com/) haven't seen them on our radar detector - we are working with handful of tablet factories and representing a couple top Chinese tablet brands, like Ainol . All of these tablets are powered by RockChip, AllWinner, ViMicro, and recently dual-core CPUs from AMLogic, but none of them by NuFront. The HDMI stick idea is not new, we have a few factories making such a product.
The baseband and IPR strategy is interesting, as non of the Chinese chip makers have those, and the big guys like NV, Intel are all going after baseband. I think Nufornt is worth keeping an eye on, as 3,4 years ago, nobody heard of RockChip, AllWinner, ViMicro in the area as well. Chinese tablet will have a big share in the tablet market.
ViMicro was founded more than 10 years by a couple Berkeley and Stanford returnees, and they IPOed on Nasdaq in 2004 (I forgot exactly which year, but long time ago). RockChip is also a company founded long time ago by mainly government funding. They didn't come up from nowhere.
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