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Monday, 17 February 2014 09:11

Qualcomm ditches TV friendly Snapdragon 802

Written by Peter Scott



Not enough demand

Back at CES Qualcomm announced the Snapdragon 802, its first SoC designed specifically for smart TVs. It was to be based on the Snapdragon 800, with a few TV friendly tweaks, such as the addition of the Hexagon DSP and 802.11ac wireless. You can check out the full spec here.

However, Qualcomm is now saying that the TV chip won’t be commercialized after all. The company said it decided not to launch the chip as the “overall demand for processors uniquely designed for smart TVs has proven to be smaller than anticipated.”

In other words there aren’t that many TV makers interested in powerful smart TV parts. It sounds a bit odd, as the chip was announced just a month ago, so it is surprising that it even got this far if there was not enough demand to make it commercially viable.

It is also interesting to note that the cancellation came just days after Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang said the core market for flagship Tegra parts will be tablets, “gaming” TVs and car infotainment systems.

Although Nvidia’s SoC market share is dwarfed by that of Qualcomm, Nvidia is doing rather well in some niches, namely in infotainment systems. If it is really planning to aggressively pursue other niches like smart TVs, it should have better chances with Qualcomm out of the way, but there is still not much demand for smart TV parts.

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