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AMD ships first Fusion chip ahead of schedule

by Scott Bicheno on 10 November 2010, 11:25


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Moment of truth

This is it: the moment of truth for AMD. As soon as it acquired ATI for $5.4 billion, over four years ago, AMD started banging on about ‘Fusion'. At the time that meant the APU (accelerated processing unit), which combines the CPU and GPU into one bit of super-silicon.

In time, AMD warmed to the term ‘fusion' so much that it started applying to pretty much everything it did. But the original meaning is still paramount, and this week it finally started shipping the product of four years' intensive R&D ahead of the Q1 2011 target date.

"We are shipping as of this week the world's first APU - codenamed Ontario/Zacate - which essentially combines the computational of [a dual-core CPU and a low/mid range graphics card] in this tiny little form-factor," said AMD CEO Dirk Meyer, at AMD's analyst day yesterday.

While the APU - which Meyer said AMD has over 100 design wins for already - probably still won't appear in end-products before next year (CES should be big), this marks arguably the most significant juncture for AMD since the acquisition of ATI.



As GM Rick Bergman stressed in his talk at the analyst day, the significance to end-users will be an improved visual experience for notebooks - especially thin and light ones - compared to the best Intel has to offer. Bergman also gave good PowerPoint, so here are the key ones illustrating what the APU is and its roadmap for both notebooks and desktops.






HEXUS Forums :: 4 Comments

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cant wait to see reviews of the first product this launches in, might actually make netbooks useable as i find them far too slow at the moment.
These chips look pretty interesting for HTPCs too.
It should be a pretty compelling chip. On every spec it has simply no competition, Atom isn't on the same level anywhere and the ULV's are too expensive with worse graphics.

It will be very difficult to justify anything except a Brazos platform next year and possibly into 2012.
Hopefully it will help AMD gain some market share and give Intel some proper competition!