Nvidia's Tegra 4i processor was originally announced alongside its LTE-less Tegra 4 brother way back in February 2013, but so far we've yet to see any devices actually come to market with the chip inside. It looks like that could finally change in the near future, though, as Nvidia CEO Jen Hsun Huang teased today that Tegra 4i-powered products are expected to debut early next year.
During Nvidia's third quarter 2013 earnings call, Huang said that he expects the first devices with Tegra 4i processors to be announced in the first quarter of 2014, with launches to follow in the second quarter. Huang also revealed that while Tegra 4i has been certified by AT&T, the first Tegra 4i products will likely see release in international markets first and not in the U.S. because "you really need to have CDMA in the U.S. to be successful." Now that Tegra 4i has been given the green light for use on AT&T's network, though, Huang says that the chip is "pretty much set on just about vastly the Western world's open markets" because of the big blue carrier's rigorous testing process.
In the months after is MWC debut, the quad-core Nvidia Tegra 4 processor has made its way into several new pieces of hardware, including Microsoft's Surface 2 and Asus's Transformer Pad Infinity. Tegra isn't nearly as widespread in the mobile market as Qualcomm's Snapdragon platform, though, which powers most every high-end Android smartphone that's now available. At least some of that is due to the Tegra 4's lack of integrated LTE, which is something that the Tegra 4i includes. We'll just have to wait and see if LTE support can help jumpstart Tegra adoption, but hey, it certainly can't hurt.