GPUs are an integral part in devices
Graphics processors, stand-alone discrete devices, and embedded processor-based graphics processing units (or GPUs) are important. They’re in most devices—including handheld mobile devices, PCs, workstations, TVs, servers, vehicle systems, game consoles, medical equipment, and wearables.
New technologies and semiconductor manufacturing processes are taking advantage of GPU’s ability to power to scale. As mentioned earlier in this series, the human and machine interface is what drives the screen on every device. NVIDIA’s (NVDA) graphics chips are PC gaming’s backbone.
The following chart shows the growth forecasts that are expected in various global devices. Huge growth is expected in machine-to-machine (or M2M), smartphones, non-smartphones and TV’s—where GPU’s play an integrated role. It also shows connections made by Cisco (CSCO).
If NVIDIA’s Maxwell architecture performs well, it will benefit exchange-traded funds (or ETFs) like the Technology Select Sector SPDR (XLK), the VanEck Vectors Semiconductor ETF (SMH), and the PowerShares QQQ Trust (QQQ). These ETFs have significant exposure to NVIDIA.
GPUs show expected growth in the PC market
Since GPUs are installed into every system or PC before they’re shipped, they indicate the PC market’s health. The Gaming PC segment requires higher-end GPUs.
As mentioned earlier in this series, the sale of NVIDIA’s new high-end Maxwell GPUs was instrumental in the company earning strong revenues in 3Q15. NVIDIA’s strong performance lifted the average selling prices (or ASPs) for the discrete GPU market.
GPUs developed specifically for the GRID
In early 2013, through GRID, NVIDIA unveiled its plans to join the cloud gaming space. A single GRID box is approximately the size of a 4U server chassis. It contains 24 GPUs that are based on NVIDIA’s Kepler architecture. The GPUs used in GRID aren’t regular graphics cards. They’re developed specifically for the GRID.