AMD Planning Plunge into Netbook Market With Low-power Chips Page: 1

AMD finally seems to have woken up to the fact that Intel and nVIDIA are leading the netbook market; the chip manufacturer has announced the development of its own low-power netbook platform. The chipmaker’s aim is to directly compete with Intel’s Atom and nVIDIA’s Ion platforms for a piece of the netbook market pie.

AMD is reportedly working on a chipset with integrated ATI graphics specifically for portable computers of 12in or smaller screen sizes. This means the new chip will be tailor made for netbooks. The chipset will form a part of AMD’s Fusion line and offer full performance on the integrated graphics chip, comparable to a dedicated card. The chip is also expected to support full 1080p playback and 3D accelerated gaming.

In terms of power consumption, the chipset is expected to draw between 10 and 15 watts, so devices powered by it can look forward to good battery life. The low power consumption also opens up the possibility of the chips finding a place in the ultra-portable mobile Internet devices and portable media player domains.

If AMD successfully builds the new chip, it could make a big difference for the company in the ultra-portable market because the manufacturer’s current offering – the Neo MV-40 is not really battery friendly. The only area where AMD is once again likely to fall short is its timing for the chip. AMD enthusiasts will most likely have to wait until 2011 to get their hands on the new offering.

Until then, Intel, nVIDIA and the latest entrant ARM will have free run of the market. By 2011, another major point of concern for AMD will also be the level of evolution that these three competitors have brought about in their chips. It’s going to be ‘fingers crossed’ for the chipmaker’s success!

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