AMD, Advanced Micro Devices, is announcing the next generation of Accelerated Processing Units (APUs) on the 15th of May; they will be actually releasing the mobile versions later in the 2nd quarter or in the 3rd quarter. The main improvement here is that AMD has revamped the CPU cores so they would be more fit to rival Intel’s i5 series than the Llanos were to the i3 series.
The CPU architecture that is being used is based on Piledriver, the successor of Bulldozer (which some consider to be a flop). Unlike the Vishera FXs, these APUs will not have L3 cache, however. The fact that this is based on Piledriver means that it will utilize a modular structure of cores. Each core is a little weaker than a ‘full’ or ‘real’ core with its own resources, but is still stronger than Intel’s Hyperthreading.
The mobile variants seem very impressive: one engineering sample got a CPU (A-10 4600m)Benchmark score (with Passmark @ cpubenchmark.net) of 5390. This was a while ago, and the single sample seems to have evaporated from the site, however. That performance beats quite a few desktops!
At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas this year, AMD was showing a computer with an output of two screens using their new technology called Lightning Bolt (guess where that came from; couldn’t possibly be ThunderBolt). One was playing Dirt3 fullscreen with low detail; the other one was apparently converting videos But moreover the dual-screen on integrated graphics, the side was taken off to uncover a third screen playing HD video also in fullscreen connected to the main computer: a skinny laptop! AMD is obviously quite proud of their graphics sector and their acquisition of ATI in 2006.
The release of the new processors could help out AMD quite a bit and hopefully get them some competition with Intel. Even if you’re an Intel fan just waiting for AMD to lose their face, if this does well or okay at its guaranteed-to-be-low price, you can probably expect to see a drop in prices of Intel machines. It might not yet be the case for gaming computers, gaming laptops, or desktop replacement laptops.