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Nvidia earnings report shows Tegra success is in the automotive market

High-end graphics sales buoy Nvidia’s outlook, but Tegra can’t find a defining mobile hardware win.


Nvidia’s Tegra continues to struggle in contrast to the rest of the company which is relatively healthy, according to Nvidia’s most recent quarterly and fiscal year-end report.

Nvidia reported Wednesday its fourth quarter GPU revenue totaled $947 million, up 14 percent from the the same time last year. Total revenue topped out at $1.14 billion for the quarter. Earnings, however, were down 16 percent from the same time last year at $146.9 million. Nvidia’s CEO Jen-Hsun Huang attributed the rise in revenue to an increase in sales of high-end GPUs.

“Quarterly revenue came in well above our outlook, driven by PC gaming, capping an outstanding year for our GPU business,” he said in a statement.

Despite Nvidia’s efforts, it can’t seem to replicate the same success it has in the PC business with Tegra. Having lost the most recent version of the Asus’ Tegra 7 tablet to Qualcomm, the SoC is still without a defining hardware win. Nvidia continues to burn-off Tegra inventory by shipping SoCs in things like the Shield and Tegra Note.  Nvidia’s Tegra K1,  the anchor of its CES presentation, while technically promising hasn’t piqued the interest of manufacturers and will likely go the way of the Tegra 4 should things not dramatically change for the better.

To make up for this lack of interest from mobile OEMs, Nvidia’s is pushing Tegra to automakers. During the company’s earnings call its CFO Colette Kress reported sales of Tegra were up 18 percent from the previous quarter on “strong demand from the automotive sector.”

Nvidia’s shares ended the trading day in New York up three percent at $16.57.

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