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Dual-core Atom may ease shortages of Atom parts in the channel

Intel is dominating the world of the netbook with its Atom single core processor. The processor running at 1.6GHz powers the vast majority of netbooks that are available to purchase right now. The tiny chip is perfect for the netbook market thanks to its low cost and low power requirements.

It's no secret that Intel is bringing new Atom processors to market for the low-cost computer segment. Intel announced via its Chip Shots blog that its dual-core Atom processor is now shipping. The part is known as the Intel Atom Processor 330. The dual-core processor cores run at 1.6GHz and have 1MB of L2 cache.

The processor has an 8W TDP and supports DDR2 667 RAM. Intel says that the new Atom is available as an integrated package and has been validated with the Intel 945GC Express chipset. The chipset features integrated Graphics Media Accelerator 950 and Intel High Definition Audio.

Microsoft has eased the restriction for manufacturers using Windows XP on netbooks to allow for larger screen sizes and more storage. However, the new more lenient restrictions form Microsoft still don’t allow for manufacturers of netbooks to use dual-core processors. That should mean that netbooks using the new dual-core Atom processor would be running some version of Linux and perhaps Windows Vista of some flavor.

DailyTech reported in mid-August that Intel was going to be releasing its dual-core Atom in September and Intel slid the processor in mere days before the end of the month. Intel is still having shortages of its single-core Atom processors in the channel. The shortage has led some makers like Asus to use older Celeron M processors.

Early in September, DailyTech reported that Intel has its next generation Atom on the roadmap for Q3 2009. The next generation Atom processor will be most notable for its integrated graphics processor.





"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer
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