While the graphics chips inside high-end smartphones and tablets have improved greatly in the past few years, they still are several levels below what PC and current-generation game consoles are capable of. This week, NVIDIA showed off a demo of its upcoming Kepler Mobile chip as part of its annual Investors Day event that showed it can run games that have DirectX 11 visuals.
VentureBeat attended the event and recorded video of the demo presentation (yes, it's a little shaky). It starts by showing graphics running on Apple's iPad, which NVIDIA CEO Jen-Hsun Huan says is capable of "vintage 1999" graphics. It then moves to a demo of Kepler Mobile running the PC version of EA's first person shooter Battlefield 3, with some advanced lighting and shadow effects and far more detailed animations and art textures.
Kepler Mobile is based on NVIDIA's Kepler PC graphics design, but its much smaller and uses far less power than its PC counterpart. During the presentation, Huang said NVIDIA has actually delayed several other projects in order to get Kepler Mobile chips out as soon as possible. He added, "We want to get multiple years ahead of the competition. It was worth the sacrifice."
Having said that, there's no word on when Kepler Mobile will actually become available. Hopefully, we won't have to wait much longer to play Battlefield 3 on, for example, a new version of Microsoft's Surface RT tablet. NVIDIA'a Tegra 3 chip is inside the current Surface RT device.