updated 02:30 pm EST, Thu January 15, 2009
AMD Dual Core Neo Soon
AMD is on track to release a dual-core version of its Athlon Neo budget ultraportable processor in just a few months, company spokesman John Taylor has said at a CES press conference. Having just launched the single-core version and its initial platform, the semiconductor firm says it fully expects to launch dual-core Athlon Neo and Sempron editions, codenamed Congo, that will be significantly faster in most cases than the single-core model. They shouldn't cost more or generate more heat than the simpler design, AMD says.
Congo will also include a new mainboard chipset and is likely to include new graphics capable of full DirectX and OpenGL effects, though it's unclear whether this will include the Mobility Radeon HD 4330, a variant of the Radeon HD 3200 or a new part altogether. A specific release window hasn't been given but is slated for sometime in mid-year.
AMD's Randy Allen adds that Congo could potentially stifle the growth of netbooks thanks to the relative performance for the cost. A $699 ultraportable is a better deal than a netbook that costs a few hundred dollars, he argues, referring to the primarily Intel-dominated systems that often cost $500 or less. Intel itself is understood to be preparing its own budget ultraportable processor for sometime later this year to offer a compromise between netbooks and faster notebooks. [via Notebook Italia]