You’ll be hearing a lot about Smartbooks in the weeks and months to come, they’re basically netbooks but operating on mobile OSs, as opposed to stuffy old computer ones.
Today at a Qualcomm Technologies press conference to announce the release of its new SnapDragon chipset, an Asus Eee PC was spotted running Google’s Android OS.
The shtick with Smarbooks is the idea that, because mobile OSs are designed to run on the teeny weenie processors found in smartphones, putting them on the larger Atom processors found in netbooks will boost their performance at key tasks such as web-browsing, text editing and VoIP.
Granted, mobile OSs aren’t designed for the netbook’s form factor, and concurrently things seem distinctly underwhelming from a UI perspective.
Which leads me to believe that maybe there’s a middle ground between the mobile OS and desktop OS that’s necessary for the Smartbook. A new, ultra-portable, but not over-simplified OS, that hits web browsing, email, media and text editing and not much else.
Xmas list 2010
Mark my words.
AMD, fighting a constant battle with Intel over the PC chip market, has announced that it’s releasing a new graphics chipset aimed at low-end PCs, called the 760G. It’ll be replacing the aging 740G chipset. The company is promising an energy efficient design and ‘smooth multitasking’, as well as a “compelling out-of-box visual experience for novice gamers playing some of today’s most popular games”.
It’s the word ‘novice’ that makes me laugh, because it seems to imply that anyone who’s played PC games before will fail to find a “compelling visual experience” using this chip. The 760G supports DirectX 10, and you’ll be able to upgrade easily to a full-on ATI graphics card with the Hybrid CrossFireX technology.
The 760G will begin showing up in motherboards from Asus, ECS, Gigabyte, Asrock, MSI, Foxconn and Biostar as of today, starting with the Asus M3A76-CM, and the Gigabyte GA-MA76GM-US2.
Exciting news from the world of processors! Open the champagne, because the details have turned up about Intel’s forthcoming processors. There’s the “Medfield”, and the “Pineview”, not to be confused with residential homes for the elderly.
The Pineview is expected to be a full “System-on-a-chip”, where all the functions of the PC – the memory controller, I/O, graphics chip, etc, are all on one chip. There are dual-core and single-core versions, and it’ll be built from a 45nm process, just like Intel’s current little champ, the Atom, which powers most netbooks in the market today.
The Medfield will take the same system-on-a-chip approach, but will be built from a 32nm process. It’s expected sometime in 2010, and will be preceded by the Pineview, which is due in 2009. Intel has confirmed that “Medfield” is an Intel codename, but won’t say any more than that.
Intel has chosen the name “Atom” for its new line of low-power microprocessors, specifically designed for use in mobile devices, UMPCs and some desktop PCs.
Intel wants to cash in on the increasing popularity of mobile devices, with the idea of a $250 Internet-connected pocket device that they’ve called the “netbook”.
The Atom processor is less than 25 square millimetres, based on 45 nanometre technology. They were previously code-named Silverthorne and Diamondville.
Intel has shown off a concept mobile device based on a new processor called Moorestown which is due to go into production in around 2009. From the picture, it looks very much like a narrow iPhone, and in reality…