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AMD is reported to be ready to launch a dual-core Neo for the Congo platform in the second half of 2009

AMD showed off a new platform at CES called Yukon that featured a new single-core Athlon Neo processor. The HP machine featuring the platform was very thin (think MacBook Air) and looked fantastic. HP is set to begin shipping the notebook in 2009.

EWeek reports that AMD will also be fielding a dual-core version of its Neo processor that will be part of the Congo platform. Congo and the dual-core Neo are reportedly set to launch later in 2009. Congo will be a platform for new types of ultraportable laptops. AMD was very clear in meetings at CES that the Neo was not for the netbook market.

AMD reps said it would cede the netbook market to Intel and focus on notebooks with more performance and functionality starting at around $600. EWeek reports that AMD's Phil Hughes wrote in an email that the dual-core Neo processor would be code named Conesus and will launch in the second half of 2009. No hints of a specific launch date or the performance of the chip was offered by Hughes.

The single core version of the Neo in the aforementioned HP notebook runs at 1.6GHz. That may sound very similar to the Intel Atom N270, but AMD assures that the processor is capable of offering a premium computing experience, whereas the Atom is not. The Neo processors will find a home inside notebooks with screens ranging from 12 to 14-inches.

The Congo platform is reported to take advantage of the dual-core Neo and AMDs own RS780M chipset featuring the SB710 Southbridge. The thermal envelope for the single-core Neo is 15-watts and eWeek says AMD will stick to that thermal envelope when the dual-core Neo debuts. The HP system shown at CES was completely passive cooled to help keep noise and size to a minimum.

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Not for Netbooks?
By Marlonsm on 1/19/2009 11:41:31 AM , Rating: 2
Why, AMD? Why leave all the netbook market for Intel?

AMD is either preparing something that will be huge for netbooks(or not... remember R600?) or it has given up and left Intel dominate the fast-growing netbook matrket.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By Spoelie on 1/19/2009 12:03:48 PM , Rating: 5
AMD does not have the resources to compete with Intel in every segment of the market. Particularly in this case:
*Intel is consistently a transistor node ahead of AMD which is huge for power sensitive applications as netbook
*The margins in the netbook market are razor thin
*The design of a netbook cpu is very specialized, money spent designing one is money not spent on a more general architecture usable in multiple segments.

I'd rather have them focus on a few key markets then compete on all fronts with Intel.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By Regs on 1/19/2009 2:07:54 PM , Rating: 1
The margins in the netbook market are razor thin

Maybe I'm not catching something here, but AMD does not sell netbooks or notebooks. I think it's a huge market, and the only one really selling now.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By ninjaquick on 1/19/2009 2:29:06 PM , Rating: 2
Read "[profit] margins"
and give me sources for netbooks being the fastest selling right now. AMD can turn a larger profit off the design they already have since they already have it at a high yield rate and low cost production.

the largest profit margin segment is the server segment, where a processor can cost 3 to 5 times more than an equally performing desktop CPU.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By Samus on 1/20/2009 1:30:12 AM , Rating: 2
Does anyone here really think Intel makes half as much selling a dozen Atom platforms as they do selling one of ANY desktop platform?

Yea, thought so. AMD's decision to NOT enter the ultra-low-power CPU market at this time, considering their current financial situation, is a correct one.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By TomZ on 1/19/2009 2:34:14 PM , Rating: 1
The margins in the netbook market are razor thin
Maybe for the netbook OEM/ODM they are, but I'll bet the profit margin on the Atom is quite high. Sure, it has a lower price compared to other processors, but as a gross margin, it is probably a good performer for Intel.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By calyth on 1/19/2009 3:17:04 PM , Rating: 2
Well, the extremely small die would make the Atom much less prone to defect-failures. Part of the Phenom launch fiasco is that the large die size creates problem - lose a die to a defect and they lost a good chunk of money.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By Oregonian2 on 1/19/2009 4:49:26 PM , Rating: 2
But on the other hand, although the die-cost margin is probably better on the Atom, the packaging cost (both the package itself, putting the die in it, testing costs per package, etc) is probably a great deal lower on the Atom in terms of percent margin.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By masouth on 1/20/2009 12:46:30 PM , Rating: 2
Actually the profit margin isn't that high and it's not hard to find soemthing regarding that.

As AMD works towards the release of its new 45nm Shanghai processors, which will have 8 to 12 cores, it’s clear that the company is unwilling to risk entering a market with such low profit margins, preferring pricey offerings. Intel, while having entered the budget market, seems to wish it could leave. However for both companies, time may compel them to unwillingly commit to the netbook market due to consumer demand.

I didn't even have to leave this site to find it...

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By Penti on 1/20/2009 9:35:48 AM , Rating: 2
AMD also has the manufacturing capacity of CSM.

But competing below the ultra portable market would just be stupid for them any how, making a new architecture doesn't make sense and you can't get a AMD64 core lower then this in power so it's a nice fit, and it might actually be usable in laptops that run business applications and Vista (Business). Instead of just XP Home and warezed XP Pro.

They could also make a cpu that's manufactured by TSMC though. They got 40nm running. But they really need a good chipset to accompany it, like a version of 780G like they are doing for the Neos in the future. Like said, a cheaper ultraportable and not a netbook. Should cost half as much as a ultra low voltage Core 2 Duo laptop.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By Iridium130m on 1/19/2009 12:05:09 PM , Rating: 4
I'm guessing becuase for the amount of investment that it would take to effectively compete in that market is not worth the return...especially given their economic situation.
My thought on netbooks is that they are a niche market, just like the ultra mobile pcs were, and that most businesses will not be interested in purchasing devices that small for their employees. The subnotebook and noteboook will continue to dominate in this arena, and this arena is where the money is at.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By masher2 on 1/19/09, Rating: 0
RE: Not for Netbooks?
By William Gaatjes on 1/19/2009 1:38:18 PM , Rating: 2
Clothing, jewelry, kitchen utensil, even toothbrushes and ball point pens-- all will eventually have their own embedded processors.

Yep the ballpen already exists but it's not x86 and i am sure it is limited still but it works.

1 Of the directors of the company i work for has a pen that actually records what you write in realtime. I don't know what format it gives of tho. I will ask tomorrow and release some more information. That is if they didn't do a april fool's day on me when it wasn't even that particular day.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By masher2 on 1/19/09, Rating: 0
RE: Not for Netbooks?
By ninjaquick on 1/19/2009 2:34:48 PM , Rating: 1
Well, in reply to both your comments, first off, yes, smaller and less consumption is the logical future, but net books are not. People like big screens, easy use, and the big spenders like bleeding edge performance. The profit made of netbooks makes it a pretty sad market. You really have to sell several netbooks for every notebook or desktop in order for the profit to be equal. Think the costs of memory, OS, hard disk, monitor, battery and every other little component in there. Its all very expensive. And really, just write on a touch desk, a la surface. less complicated albeit more expensive. and you can store images and text, so the pen doesn't make translation mistakes

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By masher2 on 1/19/09, Rating: 0
RE: Not for Netbooks?
By calyth on 1/19/2009 3:20:51 PM , Rating: 2
The question is should AMD fast-track a special core design just to try and compete in the market, or should they try to tweak an existing architecture, lower the power consumption, and call it a day.

I would think the difference in cost would be quite a bit. A slow K8, with a transistor shrink, should serve adequately in the netbook market. Whether AMD says that they're in the market or not is moot - the thing that matters is whether they're putting out chips that are usable in that form.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By StevoLincolnite on 1/19/2009 6:27:59 PM , Rating: 2
I think the K6 or K7 might be a better fit for the Netbook market, especially the K6, the design is old enough, and can be tweaked for more performance, coupled with the dozens of die shrinks since then would allow the chip to scale in clock speeds, lower power consumption and still have decent performance. (Minus floating point, that was a bit of an issue on those chips).

Tack on 64 bit, the latest SSE, And it would be set, It may not even need to match the atom in clock speed to out-perform it.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By mindless1 on 1/20/2009 1:14:49 AM , Rating: 2
They'd need power saving features they don't have, and optimizations for the more popular processing we do today. In short, they'd evolve as they have already to what we now have.

They won't need to do anything special really, performance per watt has gone up and soon we'll be at the plateau where low power processors do anything the average netbook user needs, it's just an extension of the tech gains made while developing desktop CPUs.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By TomZ on 1/19/2009 4:37:16 PM , Rating: 2
In less than 100 years, I expect the average home to have several million processors in it.
I doubt it. If you assume each one only costs $0.10 for the processor, supporting circuit, communications, software, packaging - that would add hundreds of thousands of dollars to the average cost of a home and its contents. Obviously that is not affordable by the average homeowner, and it is hard to imagine how that number of processors would add that kind of value anyway.

Thousands of processors - that I could see. But there is a point of diminishing returns.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By masher2 on 1/19/2009 4:58:16 PM , Rating: 1
> "If you assume each one only costs $0.10"

Probably a good bit less than that, assuming a tech like self-assembly and/or gamma-ray lithography. Most of the packages would be incredibly small, barely visible to the naked eye. I can see them embedded not just in consumer goods, but even possibly painted on the walls of your home in bulk, or floating in the air itself-- monitoring temperature, providing security, alarting for fire, flood, or other hazards, possibly even real-time video feeds from any and all angles. Look up some of the initiatives on "smart dust" computing for some of the ideas that are being proposed.

Remember that in 1943, the president of IBM thought there would ultimately be a world market for about 5 total computers. Most of the things we'll use computers for in the year 2100 we can't even conceive of yet.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By mindless1 on 1/20/2009 1:20:27 AM , Rating: 2
Depends on how you define processor. Processing features will be integrated in more and more ICs, but devices may become more and more multifunction so there are not separate ICs for every little function we have today. There's also bound to be a point where reduction in materials and energy consumption trumps are current mindset of interconnectivity at all costs, there would just be too limited a return on the costs.

100 years is quite a while away though, by then the economy may have collapsed to the point where they majority of inhabitants are walled off from the cybercity.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By mcturkey on 1/19/2009 6:51:57 PM , Rating: 2
A few hundred thousand dollars? That's not much, really. A hundred years ago, most homes went for a few hundred or thousand dollars.

Ask yourself now, how many processors do you think your home currently has? There are the obvious ones in your computer (several, from GPU and CPU to smaller logic controllers), the ones in every major appliance, tv, vcr, console, dvd player, remote control, etc. Without actually sitting down to work out the exact numbers, I'd wager most modern homes already have hundreds of processors. If you start thinking about the implementation of processors into food containers (RF tags are just the start), pens, coffee mugs, clothing, windows, etc, it's not unreasonable at all to imagine a home in which there are over a million processors a hundred years from now.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By mindless1 on 1/20/2009 1:23:12 AM , Rating: 2
Except there will come a point where they have nothing left to put them in. Many homes don't even have 1 million discrete "things" in them to put processors in, unless you're counting beans in a bag and flakes in the cereal box.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By masher2 on 1/20/2009 8:44:27 AM , Rating: 2
Most of them will ultimately go in the home itself. Imagine a wall with several thousand processors painted directly onto it, for instance, each communicating with its neighbor in an autonomous, mesh-based manner.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By SlyNine on 1/20/2009 4:01:22 PM , Rating: 2
Gives a whole new meaning to " if these walls could talk."

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By mindless1 on 1/20/2009 6:55:24 PM , Rating: 2
Imagine that a can of paint will still be a lot less expensive, that even today most people don't pay the extra expense for a HTPC.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By William Gaatjes on 1/21/2009 12:28:47 PM , Rating: 2
Your right. There is also a version where some sort of lasertracking scans the movement of the pen. But i wonder if it is possible to make a pen with an accelerometer in it.
These devices (ADXL330) are also used in the nintendo wii controller. If such a device can be made sensitive enough or use multiple ones it should be to build a pen that writes every where. But since the movements of handwriting are very small and fast i am not sure it is possible yet with the current generation of sensors. I think the ADIS16209 from analog devices may be accurate enough to build such a write and record everywhere pen.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By ceefka on 1/19/2009 5:00:13 PM , Rating: 2
Is [url=]this[/url] the pen you mean?

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By justshawnf on 1/19/2009 10:00:40 PM , Rating: 2
This may be more what he was thinking...

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By vulcanproject on 1/19/2009 1:38:36 PM , Rating: 2
i wouldnt say the netbook market is narrow. i would say its potential is enormous. it may still be seen as a niche now, but if sales and interest continues as of 2008, it will be a monster established before the end of this year.

as for this processer i think yes, AMD cannot compete on all levels with intel, but this is a huge mistake handing the whole netbook market on a silver platter to intel. intel are almost certain to have shrunk atom to 32nm this year, nvidia want a piece of the action too. is this market, one of the few booming in the slump - really something struggling AMD can afford to dismiss?

i think the economic climate is only going to further accelerate netbook sales. i think a lot of people are reasoning: why buy a full size expensive laptop, when a cheap netbook can do the same basic things for less money?

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By dflynchimp on 1/19/2009 12:09:34 PM , Rating: 2
AMD has considerably less cash to probe new markets than Intel does. This was always the case, and it makes every decision they make in regards to spending all the more important. At this time I'm sure their main preogative is to improve their Phenom platform as well as fund the graphics division to get a decent followup to the 48xx series. At the very least, it's starting to look like the ATI acquisition is finally starting to pay off.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By Torched on 1/19/2009 1:09:43 PM , Rating: 2
They only needed to improve the Geode chips to compete. The Geode LX platform was approx 5-7 watts on the old 130nm node. However, they closed development in that division just before the netbook market took off.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By masher2 on 1/19/2009 1:25:43 PM , Rating: 2
I agree. Touch up the old Geode, shrink it to 45nm, and you'd have a chip that would cost pennies to produce, and be a real powerhouse in the mobile devices sector.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By Marlonsm on 1/19/2009 2:30:32 PM , Rating: 2
Remaking Geode seems to be the right way if AMD wants to get into netbooks.
Some netbooks even use Geodes, but they aren't as good as the Atom ones.

RE: Not for Netbooks?
By Lightnix on 1/21/2009 7:50:24 AM , Rating: 2
Heh, give the thing an extra core and some more cache so it doesn't run out of space to put contacts, at least.

By icanhascpu on 1/19/2009 5:19:33 PM , Rating: 2
What the hell are they thinking? They need to catch up, not spread out. They dont have the money for this.

I dont understand what they are thinking. It doesnt seem like they are focused, and stuff like this is just going to make it longer between their next chip architecture upgrade in the segment that matters to sustaining them as a company in the first place.

By Penti on 1/20/2009 9:50:42 AM , Rating: 2
You think they have stopped the developing of new designs just because they release a several years old chip at an old node-size in a low power version? If anything they will keep making money from an old production line. It's not a new chip. Doesn't even have to be the same guys making the designs.

This doesn't slow them down.

And it's not like desktop pcs for gaming is the only segment that matters, the server side is really important. And their new chipsets that will come later this year is really important for it. However getting a stronger foothold in the notebook market isn't bad.

By icanhascpu on 1/21/2009 9:21:36 PM , Rating: 2
Of course it slows them down.

1. Sucks away R&D $
2. Sucks away R&D iq

For what? So they can play second fiddle in another CPU sector? They are being delusional and diluted.

By SonicIce on 1/19/2009 3:19:03 PM , Rating: 1
who is that girl in the pic? hubba hubba

RE: babe
By marvdmartian on 1/20/2009 9:58:09 AM , Rating: 2
She's the uber-geek babe of perfection. You'll see her here from time to time. :)

However, with a processor name like Neo, wouldn't a picture of Agent Smith have been a more appropriate choice??

"MISTER Anderson!!!"

By MadMan007 on 1/19/2009 11:51:58 AM , Rating: 2
Sweet, hopefully this means even more competition in mini-ITX nettops. Intel forced prices down from VIAs rediculous levels and now this means more choice too. And a product that might be delivered within a sane timeframe unlike Nano.

By Chocobollz on 1/22/2009 1:45:07 PM , Rating: 2
Dual breast???!!?!?!? o_o

Well I'm just kidding but.. is those breast for sale? XD

By FaceMaster on 1/19/09, Rating: -1
By acejj26 on 1/19/2009 11:21:34 AM , Rating: 2
Congratulations. You have nothing better to do than monitor this site so you can be the first person to post nothing of value.

BTW, is this 2005? Do you have any "In Soviet Russia, [insert random noun] [insert random verb] you!!" comments?

By FaceMaster on 1/19/09, Rating: -1
By FaceMaster on 1/19/09, Rating: -1
By darkblueslider on 1/19/09, Rating: 0
By Marlonsm on 1/19/09, Rating: 0
By Diesel Donkey on 1/19/2009 11:53:39 AM , Rating: 5
I don't know why I feel the desire to respond to your inane comment, but it should read

"In Soviet Russia, comments rate YOU down."

The whole point is that the object which is usually manipulated by humans in other countries turns the tables in the extinct USSR.

By masher2 on 1/19/2009 1:41:26 PM , Rating: 1
> "but it should read..."

You might want to look up the term 'anastrophe' to see how it applies here. It might be a bit of a stretch to claim the OP was intentionally engaging in verb-subject inversion for rhetorical emphasis, but I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. :)

By FaceMaster on 1/19/09, Rating: -1
By TomZ on 1/19/2009 4:39:53 PM , Rating: 2
Where did you get the idea that Michael lives in Spain?

By FaceMaster on 1/20/09, Rating: -1
By Diesel Donkey on 1/19/2009 6:38:20 PM , Rating: 2
In fact I do not take issue with the use of anastrophe in this case, but rather the fact that the subject of the OP's sentence was "people" rather than "comments". The creation of the sentence was a violation of the principles upon which the extremely tired and overused "In Soviet Russia" joke template was based, and I just won't stand for it! :)

By walk2k on 1/19/2009 5:58:24 PM , Rating: 2

Does it know kung-fu?

"If you mod me down, I will become more insightful than you can possibly imagine." -- Slashdot

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