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Intel Ships New Atom Processors To PC Makers

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the shipping-them-to-zoos-wasn't-working dept.

Intel 59

randomErr writes "Intel began shipping the new mobile Atom, formerly codenamed 'Cedar Trail', processors to manufacturers. As with most new chips it has more features and longer battery life. Intel said today 'Computing systems using new Atom processors will debut in early 2012 through leading original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) such as Acer, Asus, HP, Lenovo, Samsung, and Toshiba.'"

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59 comments

i can haz (-1, Offtopic)

rickb928 (945187) | more than 2 years ago | (#38528766)

First post?

Cedar Trails? (4, Funny)

Nyder (754090) | more than 2 years ago | (#38528812)

http://www.cedartrailsnudistretreat.com/ [cedartrail...etreat.com]

Sweet.

Oh, Cedar Trail. my bad.

Re:Cedar Trails? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38528892)

*shakes head*

*opens mouth to speak*

*Closes mouth and moves on*

ARM (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38528836)

Intel is really afraid of ARM: they can't compete on energy efficiency and virtual machines makes their instructions unncecessary.

What kind of virtual machines? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38528962)

virtual machines makes [Intel's] instructions unncecessary

Of Java virtual machines, ActionScript virtual machines, or JavaScript virtual machines, to which were you referring?

Re:What kind of virtual machines? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38529216)

All of them, you can also include LLVM and Android.

Missing bindings (2)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529458)

All of them

Except all three of these virtual machines tend to have one annoying misfeature: lack of bindings within the VM to specific I/O devices on the host. In Java, Flash, or JavaScript, how does a program read a USB Human Interface Device that isn't a mouse or keyboard, such as a joystick, without requiring installation of native shims such as JoyToKey that might not be available for ARM? In Java SE or JavaScript, how does a program activate a computer's camera or microphone (after asking the user for permission)? They also tend to impose a substantial overhead in RAM, as both the bytecode and the native code need to be in RAM at once.

you can also include LLVM

How long will it take for Google to finish PNaCl so that non-free applications can be distributed to the public in the form of LLVM bitcode?

and Android

I kind of included that in Java, seeing as Dalvik isn't very different from JVM.

Re:ARM (1)

helix2301 (1105613) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529662)

That is so true Intel chips are great but they always run hot and they always use lots of energy.

Re:ARM (1)

sortius_nod (1080919) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529860)

This really makes it hard to get excited about the Atom range these days. With Intels own ULV chips sitting just above the Atom, & ARM's offerings evolving at a far faster rate than the Atom, why do I really want a device with one?

Didn't they announce these chips last year?

Re:ARM (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#38531488)

Honestly, it largely depends on how intel decides to price them:

If they continue with their recent trend of fairly aggressive pricing on 'real' CoreWhatever ULV chips, of which even the weakest 'celeron' branded ones are superior to the atom, and crazy optimistic pricing and deliberate crippling of Atom parts and boards, it will be hard to get worked up about them.

If, on the other hand, Intel is genuinely getting a bit rattled by some of the fancier ARM gear, and chooses to price the Atom more in line with its die size(Atoms are not fast; but they are tiny compared to Intel's punchier designs, rather than their desire to spare the lower end of the Core line, I'll take several.

Atoms aren't screaming fast, or milliwatt power sippers; but they are excellent in various appliance applications: In network attached storage, for instance, the superiority of an atom board to some horrid little SoC is downright alarming. The performance of a nasty little plastic router vs. an Atom running monowall or similar is equally unfair.

If the price is right, there are plenty of places where a bit more punch, and the ability to use 100% normal PC linux experience, are worth the modest additional power consumption. If they keep pricing them in order to save the Core line, they get a lot less exciting...

Re:ARM (1)

Hamsterdan (815291) | more than 2 years ago | (#38531240)

If Apple was able to change architectures *twice* on hte Mac, and also change OSes without preventing software from working, I'm pretty sure Intel and MS can pull it off too.

68k to PPC (using emulation), PPC to Intel (using emulation), and OS9 to OS X (again, using emulation).

Do we *really* need a modern CPU to carry instructions from a Pentium? no, it can be done with emulation. Same goes for Windows.

I'm pretty sure a modern multiple core multi Ghz CPU would be able to virtualize that old win 3.x program that needed a 486 or a Pentium. Less silicon & less legacy code.

Panther (10.4) can run OS 9 software via Classic, PPC machines could emulate a 68k CPU, and x86 macs could use Rosetta to emulate PPC code. Pretty seamless, so I'm wondering why Intel hasn't done it yet...

Re:ARM (2)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38531336)

The problem with ARM MR AC is the same problem that has left Linux in last place, which is this: There is ALWAYS something, some program which there is simply no equivalent that is a must have. With businesses its all those one off and small company apps, everything from inventory to medical billing, and of course Quickbooks is god for a reason, its so easy it lets a single QB girl (and its ALWAYS a girl, i swear you'd think they had a union or something) run an entire SMB, everything from payroll to taxes, with just a single PC. On the home side there is games, the app that came with their printers, the lack of drivers for said printers and other gear, its ALWAYS something. That's why MSFT hasn't had to change its $100 price tag in 30 damned years, because they know folks ain't going nowhere.

I'd say what Intel needs to be worrying about is AMD in the consumer and mainstream market because lets face it, the "Must win teh benches!" types are an itty bitty portion of the market and for the vast majority PCs have gone past good enough and into insanely overpowered by now. Hell my 71 year old dad has a fricking quad! Does he need a quad? Oh hell no but AMD quads were so cheap that there wasn't any point going dual.

Which brings us to TFA and where Intel royally fucked up, and that was cutting off Nvidia to the point Nvidia bailed from the chipset market. For those that don't know Nvidia is now out of the chipset biz, all they are selling is old designs for as long as somebody will pay for them. that means no ION 3, no new features, hell most Nvidia boards won't even support NCQ which means your losing about 30% performance on an HDD. What Intel needs to worry about with Atom isn't ARM but those nice and cheap AMD E series which frankly have been selling out so fast AMD killed the entire AM3 line two quarters early so they could devote the fabs to cranking Bobcats. As someone who bought a EEE E-350 I can see why they are selling out, 6 hours on a battery watching full HD, doesn't get hot even under load, and with enough power i use mine as a portable music creation studio with Audacity. Intel never has figured out how to make truly kick ass GPUs and with AMD integrating ATI into APUs you get frankly insane levels of power for cheap money. I just finished setting up a C series for a customer and frankly it spanks the hell out of the Atom units and has enough power i was able to remote in using Remote Assistance to do the final tweaks while she sat at home. All that for $300 with Win 7 HP instead of crappy starter like you get on atom netbooks? Yeah Intel should worry.

Go to Tiger and look up the E-350 and see how the OEMs have gone nuts with AMD chips (now that Intel can't bribe them anymore) and have slapped E series into everything, they have HTPCs, netbooks, laptops, and all in ones ALL using the E series chips. Intel screwed themselves both by crippling Atom for fear of losing Celeron sales and by killing the Nvidia chipset business which ION was the only thing that made Atom units worth having. Personally I wouldn't be surprised if Intel kills atom within a year and a half and just uses it for embedded while having Celeron try to fill the gap because trying some of the newer chips (last one I tried was the 525) frankly without ION its painfully slow to use. Stupid move Intel, you should have welcomed Nvidia instead of attacking them.

Re:ARM (1)

raygundan (16760) | more than 2 years ago | (#38533428)

I thought Intel was so far ahead on energy efficiency that it wasn't even close-- but that their absolute power consumption didn't scale down well. In terms of "getting crap done per watt", they have an edge from being a full cycle ahead of everybody else in the process-tech race. But they don't have chips that get anything done for less than a watt. The Atom was an attempt to address this-- it's substantially less power-efficient than an i7, but it uses less power.

Re:ARM (2)

kenh (9056) | more than 2 years ago | (#38535796)

Typically the power problem for the Atom CPU is in the chipset it is deployed with, not the CPU itself. Early Atom MBs from Intel had a fairly large heatsink on the chipset, and the CPU itself was air-cooled...

What? They are still making Atom? (2, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | more than 2 years ago | (#38528906)

Where are they selling it? Don't get me wrong. I have a netbook. My wife has one. My son has one. We all use them... well, I haven't used mine for a long time ... it is something of a backup/skype device but that's about it.

All the tablets and things coming out now are running ARM. Microsoft has already buried both the Atom and the netbook by blocking and discouraging them in every way they could imagine. Windows XP is no longer available through OEM and Microsoft somehow has the power to make everyone cripple their implementation of Atom to 2GB or less RAM supported. So what is Intel targeting?

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38529024)

"Acer, Asus, HP, Lenovo, Samsung, and Toshiba"

Really? Do we have to spell it out for you?

I'll take netbooks, low-end laptops, and tablets for $500 Alex.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

phorm (591458) | more than 2 years ago | (#38530640)

I believe that some media boxes (and certainly the homebuilt variety) also use atom.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

Locutus (9039) | more than 2 years ago | (#38531000)

probably just demo's for CES.

LoB

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#38539138)

For $500 you could easily get a laptop with a real processor rather than one of those stripped down Atom crap chips.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (5, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529068)

All the tablets and things coming out now are running ARM.

Come Windows 8, which expands support for capacitive touch tablets, Intel wants to be ready in order not to give the entire market to ARM. The big advantage of Atom is that existing non-free niche applications designed for Windows XP will likely run on an Atom-powered Windows tablet roughly as fast as they would on a PC with a comparably clocked Pentium 4. Because they're non-free, the end user can't recompile them for ARM, and because they're niche, the publisher is likely unwilling to.

Microsoft somehow has the power to make everyone cripple their implementation of Atom to 2GB or less RAM supported

Can you cite an article showing how Microsoft is responsible? Google 2 gb atom limit microsoft failed me.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38529442)

The "Starter" Edition of Windows 7 (which is the edition they recommend for netbooks) has an arbitrary 2GB RAM limit in it.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529508)

Then preinstall Xubuntu as the primary OS and have it run Windows 7 Starter Edition in a VM. Windows apps get 2 GB; Linux apps and Wine-compatible Windows apps get the rest. Or does the OEM agreement absolutely require that Windows 7 be run on the bare metal?

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

Locutus (9039) | more than 2 years ago | (#38531098)

then they would lose the money Microsoft pays them to not install Lin...oops, I mean lose the marketing program money paid for install Windows. "preinstall Xubuntu as the primary OS" just isn't so easy if you are an OEM with any kind of contract with Microsoft on any product.

LoB

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (2)

klapaucjusz (1167407) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529520)

Microsoft somehow has the power to make everyone cripple their implementation of Atom to 2GB or less RAM supported

Can you cite an article showing how Microsoft is responsible? Google 2 gb atom limit microsoft failed me.

The following table specifies the limits on physical memory for Windows 7.
...
Windows 7 Starter 2 GB N/A

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/aa366778(v=vs.85).aspx [microsoft.com]

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (5, Informative)

Graymalkin (13732) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529566)

What the GP is talking about is Windows 7 Starter's 2GB RAM limit [microsoft.com] . You can stuff more RAM into a machine running Starter (which is most netbooks) but it will only actually use 2GB. To be able to use more than 2GB with your netbook you need to upgrade to Windows 7 Home Premium which is about $80, in addition to the cost to upgrade the RAM. This means the average $200 netbook ends up costing $400 to have a decent amount of RAM available.

I've seen very few netbooks that ship with Home Basic or Home Premium out of the box, most I've ever seen have Starter. Not only is the RAM limit a problem but it also gimps a lot of basic OS features like the ability to use multiple monitors, DVD playback, and fast user switching. Microsoft has put a lot of work into making sure the average netbook is just a crippled web terminal.

Route around Microsoft (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38530792)

If the problem is Microsoft, a solution might route around Microsoft. How should the developers of Linux distributions improve their offerings so that people can start demanding Linux netbooks again?

Re:Route around Microsoft (1)

LeperPuppet (1591409) | more than 2 years ago | (#38531716)

I've heard that Intel's Atom graphics drivers for Linux are pretty awful. Customers aren't exactly clamoring for netbooks with barely functioning graphics displays.

Re:Route around Microsoft (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38531840)

Awful in what sense? The GMA 3100 in my Dell Mini 10 works fine in Xubuntu 11.10.

Re:Route around Microsoft (1)

Narishma (822073) | more than 2 years ago | (#38532538)

Only the one model using a PowerVR GPU has driver problems under Linux. The rest use the crappy Intel IGPs but at least they work fine with the open source drivers.

Re:Route around Microsoft (1)

Lussarn (105276) | more than 2 years ago | (#38536990)

My cheepo ASUS 1015PN has nvidia ION2, full OpenGL support. Hardware accelerates any movie I throw at it (Well, the ones that needs it anyway), even 50GB bluray rips is no problem. Bitstreams DTS-HD Master and Dolby TrueHD over HDMI. Quite a little wonder, all hardware supported in latest Ubuntu.

If you need a great Linux netbook, 1015PN is a nice choice.

Tried that. (1)

thegarbz (1787294) | more than 2 years ago | (#38533946)

The problem with Linux netbooks is that they pretended to be just like windows. No in the sense that they looked like windows, but in the sense that poeple treated them as small PCs, and then when they went to a website to download a small little program that wouldn't have a problem running on a netbook they found out that for some reason the program didn't run.

The general public doesn't know enough about this linux thing to know how the app ecosystem works. Apple / Android worked around that with the App store approach but they weren't selling computers, and more importantly people didn't treat them like computers.

I know several geeky types with Linux netbooks, and they love them. I know several non-geeky types who returned them for a Windows Xp machine of the day because of all the "things that didn't work" (read, I couldn't install windows live messenger or other commonly used windows only program).

Have Wine recognize programs that don't work (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38534078)

and then when they went to a website to download a small little program that wouldn't have a problem running on a netbook they found out that for some reason the program didn't run.

That would have been kinda-sorta solved had the netbook makers decided to just preinstall Wine. That gets you half the Windows application library in one click.

The general public doesn't know enough about this linux thing to know how the app ecosystem works.

That's because at the beginning of the netbook fad, there wasn't yet anything with the high production values of Ubuntu Software Center.

I know several non-geeky types who returned them for a Windows Xp machine of the day because of all the "things that didn't work"

A lot of the problem involved the absolutely horrid distributions that some of the netbook makers foisted on their customers, such as the version of Xandros on Eee PC or the version of Linpus on Aspire One or the "Ubuntu Moblin Remix" on Inspiron Mini. I've bought two Linux netbooks, and after about a week with each I ended up wiping it and installing vanilla Ubuntu. (I switched to xubuntu-desktop since 11.10 once I realized the extent to which Unity was starting to suck balls.)

(read, I couldn't install windows live messenger or other commonly used windows only program).

Then perhaps a customized Wine could recognize installers for Windows programs known not to work and recommend a close substitute package that does work, such as Pidgin or Empathy instead of Windows Live Messenger.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38534428)

Then you just don't know where to look friend as i haven't seen any of the AMD netbooks coming with starter, they all come with HP. i just got finished setting up a C series for a customer, nice little Acer Aspire and it came with 250gb HDD and 2gb of RAM along with Win 7 HP X64, in fact damned near all the AMD netbooks come with Win 7 X64 so you can go up to 8Gb of RAM like I did in my EEE. MSFT put the 2gb limit in starter because their old friends at Intel was scared netbooks would cut into their Celeron business but since AMD don't cripple their chips the OEMs have been using HP X64.

So you just need to look at something besides Intel friend, Intel don't want you buying netbooks in the first place and only got into the biz after AMD gave the OLPC the Geode chip and people started asking about that "cute baby laptop'. Funny that to this very day that is what all my customers call netbooks, cute baby laptops. But I'd suggest if you don't want a 2gb RAM limit you look at the EEE or Acer Aspires as both have AMD units that will hold 4Gb and the EEE holds 8Gb. Since the price difference between 4Gb and 8Gb was only $6 I splurged and went 8Gb on my EEE and couldn't be happier, superfetch really screams with that much RAM to play with and all my apps run instantly thanks to running in RAM. Oh and for those that like playing with VMs the AMD netbooks have VT support so you can have hardware supported VMs which makes them run that much nicer.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

kenh (9056) | more than 2 years ago | (#38535828)

The power of Microsoft is their ability to discount the license fee for entry-level OS based on the RAM capacity, screen size and other assorted specifications. They offer significant OS discounts on hardware that can only accept 2 Gig of RAM and have a certain screen size (or smaller).

Ever notice that some "netbooks" ship with Win 7 Home Premium x64 and some ship with Win 7 Starter? The ones that ship without Starter version of Win 7 can typically accept more RAM (4 Gig is not uncommon) and sport nice large screens (like 11")...

Systems/boards sold without a bundled OS from Microsoft are free of any limitations, but if the goal is to sell those boards/systems to OEMs that will build systems that sell with bundled OSs they may opt to limit the RAM capacity of the system.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (2)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38538428)

The power of Microsoft

...is something we should figure out how to route around, as I pointed out above [slashdot.org] .

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (2)

oldlurker (2502506) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529170)

Where are they selling it? Don't get me wrong. I have a netbook. My wife has one. My son has one. We all use them... well, I haven't used mine for a long time ... it is something of a backup/skype device but that's about it.

All the tablets and things coming out now are running ARM. Microsoft has already buried both the Atom and the netbook by blocking and discouraging them in every way they could imagine. Windows XP is no longer available through OEM and Microsoft somehow has the power to make everyone cripple their implementation of Atom to 2GB or less RAM supported. So what is Intel targeting?

I have an Atom based media center PC [shuttle.eu] that I'm very happy with. With SSD disk. No fans, no sounds, it is completely silent. And not much bigger than a book. Running Win7 MCE performance has been good, no issues playing back any HD format video.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38529182)

Windows XP is no longer available through OEM

How is this a problem? Netbooks can run Windows 7 fine, on about 1 GB of RAM.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529322)

They better be, because I've never, ever seen any netbook for sale in Canada with anything else than 1 GiB RAM.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (2)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529530)

All the tablets and things coming out now are running ARM.

How many of those can run a proper Linux distro?

Actually, I have a couple of ARM devices doing just that (N800, N900, Buffalo Linkstations) but the majority seem to be running some kind of a phone OS, and it is not straightforward to install your own distro. I don't have much love for x86, but at least the semi-standardized platform lets me run whatever software I want.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529580)

Microsoft somehow has the power to make everyone cripple their implementation of Atom to 2GB or less RAM supported.

My Atom machine [zotac.com] has 3 GB currently installed, with a maximum of 4 GB.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 2 years ago | (#38530806)

Microsoft somehow has the power to make everyone cripple their implementation of Atom to 2GB or less RAM supported

Only if they want to use Windows 7 Starter. There's nothing to stop someone making a netbook with Windows 7 Home Premium (in fact Asus's 12" netbooks do). Or for that matter Linux or Chrome OS or Android.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38532498)

Wow, this is so hard to explain, yet it's obvious if you know any thing about Intel's processors. Ok, so Intel make a cpu at a give node say 65nm, yet when its competitors make their cpu's say PowerPC, Mipps, or Sparc at the same node it becomes obvious that Intels processors are slow and they run hot. So to avoid the comparison Intel quickly moves down to the next node, and comparing Intel's 45nm cpu to the competitions 65nm cpu its still slower yet not has hot, and the competition has been somewhat neutralized. Its extremely expensive to to build new fabs, yet that's the only way Intel can put shine on the turd that is x86. So now intel has built a new say 45nm fab, now they'll take the 65nm design and build that using 45nm process, rename it so every one will think it's new and improved. Now Intel has to collect as much money as it can on that 65nm design built using 45nm to help pay for the fab. Now Intel has been telling every one how great its new 45nm process is so more people commit to buying these 65nm designs built using 45nm, and Intel make boat loads of money. Now seven months later they have the 45nm design ready to be built on the 45nm process, and when compared to the 65nm its much better, so they make boat loads of money. So Intel has been doing these same step since the Pentium M(Pentium 3) at 90nm, and now they reached 22nm.So the problem Intel faces is the cost of being able to jump beyond 22nm when the competition is rite behind them at 32nm with new design. And since other CPU architectures have such a higher performance then x86 theres not an urgency to rush to the next node. Make you wonder how Freescale can have an 80% market share building 65nm cpu for networking and routing equipment{PowerPC}. So now the 32nm processes has matured as is cheap and common, and designs from AMD, Sun(O), IBM, ARM, and Mipps are coming out it 2012. Intel has reach a brick wall as far as performance goes with their 22nm process they'll either have to implement allot of low frequency core such as Pentium 3(atom) or start removing instructions from the architecture, and they're doing both. They also have allot of 32nm manufacturing capacity so instead of plant siting idle start making as many throw-away $10 cpu as possible.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38534330)

Geez are the mods stoned? insightful for a "Microsoft burns babies ZOMFG!" post? FYI it didn't have a damned thing to do with Microsoft it was INTEL that put the limits on Atom to keep it from competing with their more profitable Celeron. if it had a damned thing to do with MSFT you wouldn't be able to buy 10 and 12 inch AMD netbooks that hold 4-8Gb of RAM which I can tell you first hand you can. my EEE 1215b has the E series APU and has 8Gb of RAM and it came with win 7 HP instead of the low end starter, and that with a 320Gb HDD was only $350 pre flood and is about $430 now. So in this case you are blaming the wrong guy chuck, MSFT killed XP because it is a fricking decade old and is just too damned long in the tooth to continue patching the thing (what are they up to now, something like 5000 patches counting the service packs?) and Intel pre-cripples the atom to keep from damaging more profitable markets. Buy AMD if you want a netbook that isn't crippled and has full support for VMs and plenty of RAM.

As for ARM? Its making money hand over fist because its disposable, nothing more. How many have multiple cell phones sitting in a drawer? my family probably has like 30 of the things piled in a drawer like old socks. You get a new one with contract, old one goes in junk drawer. But ARM won't replace x86 simply because there is millions of x86 programs people want to run and when you need to get real work done you can't beat x86 on performance without destroying the only advantage ARM has which is its ULV power sipping. Make an ARM CPU that performs even at the level of a first gen Core2Quad or Phenom and watch the power skyrocket as the arch simply was never designed to crank out the kind of FLOPs you get on x86. Folks have simply slowed down on buying X86 as unlike ARM they don't shitcan the unit every 2 years, that's all. Hell I got rid of my big power hungry laptop for the EEE simply because i found when i'm mobile even the Bobcat APU is more power than i really need, so why should folks go out and buy the new 8 cores when they aren't even stressing their dual cores? Hell I bought the Thuban 6 core when i found out they quit making 'em just so I could have my board maxed out, but did i need it? Nope my quad was frankly overpowered to begin with and in this new build I gave my GF will be insanely overpowered for anything she can think up.

ARM will continue to sell as long as carriers pass them out like candy and there are people that still haven't gotten a tablet that wants one. Give it a few more years and ARM will be just as overpowered and over-saturated as X86 is now and then watch the market take a nosedive. Hell I wouldn't be surprised if a third of the ARM business now isn't the carriers passing out smartphones like the bank hands out suckers simply because they make out like bandits on data plans. However once we are down to only a couple of carriers and they just collude instead of compete that will be over and the free phones will go the way of free checking. But saying ARM is gonna kill x86 is like saying mopeds are gonna kill the trucking industry, its just THAT delusional.

Re:What? They are still making Atom? (1)

evilviper (135110) | more than 2 years ago | (#38546156)

All the tablets and things coming out now are running ARM. Microsoft has already buried both the Atom and the netbook by blocking and discouraging them in every way they could imagine.

Tablets are hyped like crazy, but they sure as hell haven't replaced laptops and netbooks. Tablets are a joke by comparison. Sure, they're the trendy, fun thing, but rdesktop / citrix on them is a nightmare. No NX Clients exist. SSH clients are extremely primitive at best. Etc.

Don't get me wrong, I love my Android phone, but 90% of it's appeal is the fact that I will have it in my pocket wherever I am. A tablet only sounds good until you think about the details of all the things it really can't do, and you forget that everything it can do, your phone can do to...

If I could only have one device, it would be an Android phone. If I can have two devices, though, the second would be a netbook...

Who cares what Microsoft is doing? Linux started the netbook craze, and there's no reason it can't go back to it's roots. If smartphones and tablets have proven anything, it's that people are perfectly happy being completely Windows-incompatible, so why don't netbook makers get it yet?

Oh, and netbooks and similar devices are doing just fine. AMD can't make their 15W, 1.6GHz Fusion CPUs fast enough... Somehow with AMD making Geode CPUs for years, and Intel making ATOMs for a few years now, they were both completely missing the mark no matter how hard they tried, and then AMD comes along and dummies their way into a super-hot market with massive pent-up demand just by making a low-spec CPU with a decent GPU.

Really (1)

anon208 (2410460) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529012)

Its about fucking time.

I'm pedantic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38529064)

and chips rarely have battery life, they have power consuption

And I'm doing dimensional analysis (2)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529276)

and chips rarely have battery life, they have power consuption

From one you can find the other. Battery life (in h) equals battery charge capacity (in Ah) times battery voltage (in V) divided by the sum of all components' power consumption (in W). So if you reduce any component's power consumption, you increase the battery life. The goal becomes to reduce the CPU's power consumption to a rounding error compared to that of an LCD backlight, and ARM got there before x86.

Re:And I'm doing dimensional analysis (2)

The End Of Days (1243248) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529430)

ARM started from the bottom and is struggling to match Intel for performance. Intel started from the top and is struggling to match ARM for efficiency.

This battle is far from over, and I'm putting my money on Intel because in the end, they have manufacturing prowess no one can equal.

And I'm doing brute force. (1)

Ostracus (1354233) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529500)

Manufacturing prowess is another word for "brute force" because we just can't live without our legacy decisions.

Re:And I'm doing dimensional analysis (2)

Daniel Phillips (238627) | more than 2 years ago | (#38531200)

ARM started from the bottom and is struggling to match Intel for performance. Intel started from the top and is struggling to match ARM for efficiency.

This battle is far from over, and I'm putting my money on Intel because in the end, they have manufacturing prowess no one can equal.

In a portable device I am only interested in mips/watt, provided baseline performance is good enough to run apps and GUI without lag, which ARM A8 certainly is and it only gets better from here. As far as I am concerned, the hardware problem is solved: ARM is it. Thanks to Google skinning Linux and marketing it as Android, ARM now has access to all the device drivers it needs to really succeed on portable devices. Now the fight for usability shifts to a new front: working around Google's half baked attempt to lock down Linux behind a shiny but pathetically limited GUI, and Google's self-damaging attempt to turn native apps into second class citizens. I'm pretty sure it will all work out in the end. Google may have an evil streak here and there but they are not so far gone that they cannot be embarrassed into doing the right thing from time to time. I can even imagine Android development opening up into a proper community project instead of the Google lapdog it currently is. Otherwise what happened to Oracle with OpenOffice will inevitably happen to Google. I think the uberlords at Google will eventually grasp the logic of winning some PR points and expanding the developer community for free, versus losing control of the entire project. Sorry, rambled a little there. The point is, it's not about which processor is best for mobile any more, we already know that. Now it's all about getting usable software on that processor.

just shipping for demo devices for CES (1)

Locutus (9039) | more than 2 years ago | (#38529778)

there will be lots of buzz about them and then we can't actually buy anything( HP Slate or ARM netbooks ).

It's really getting to be a habit for vendors to show prototypes at CES and other shows and then never put a product on the market. I'm not a fan of that unless it specifically states it's an OEM design or something along those lines.

These 32nm and smaller Atom based devices have potential but when they spin them out at $400 and up they might just as well target them to a niche like the medical field. oh wait...

LoB

The problem is Microsoft's license terms. (5, Informative)

Dzimas (547818) | more than 2 years ago | (#38530604)

I recently bought a sub-$200 Acer with an N570 dual core Atom processor. It's better than I thought, especially after bumping the RAM. It looks like the Cedar Trail chips will offer a nice performance boost and lower manufacturing costs because of the SOIC integration.

But...

The stupid hardware restrictions Microsoft places on manufacturers to qualify for cheap OEM copies of Windows Starter have absolutely crippled the Netbook segment -- 1024x600 screen resolution and a maximum 1GB RAM is absolutely ridiculous in 2011. With a slightly higher resolution display and 2 to 4GB of memory, these machines would be extremely competitive in the low end portable market.

Re:The problem is Microsoft's license terms. (1)

bingbangboom (2457958) | more than 2 years ago | (#38532196)

I recently bought a sub-$200 Acer with an N570 dual core Atom processor. It's better than I thought, especially after bumping the RAM. It looks like the Cedar Trail chips will offer a nice performance boost and lower manufacturing costs because of the SOIC integration.

But...

The stupid hardware restrictions Microsoft places on manufacturers to qualify for cheap OEM copies of Windows Starter have absolutely crippled the Netbook segment -- 1024x600 screen resolution and a maximum 1GB RAM is absolutely ridiculous in 2011. With a slightly higher resolution display and 2 to 4GB of memory, these machines would be extremely competitive in the low end portable market.

Use an AMD C-series or E-series next to your $200 Atom netbook and you will realize just how much you were overcharged. Did I mention that they can play games, 1080p video, and have HDMI? Intel Atom sucks.

Re:The problem is Microsoft's license terms. (1)

Dzimas (547818) | more than 2 years ago | (#38534554)

Umm. I don't need games or 1080p video to do my job, luckily. ;)

New Atom will have PowerVR Gfx - what about Linux? (2)

Chewy509 (1178715) | more than 2 years ago | (#38531024)

As the subject points out... The new Cedar Trail are now using PowerVR derived graphics core... anyone know what the status of Linux is for the PowerVR SGX 545?

Re:New Atom will have PowerVR Gfx - what about Lin (1)

bingbangboom (2457958) | more than 2 years ago | (#38532144)

Considering 64bit Windows will *never* get drivers nor support for DirectX 10, I would say completely abysmal.

Re:New Atom will have PowerVR Gfx - what about Lin (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38533258)

I believe intel and Imagination Technologies are recruiting for such people at the moment.

Atoms are not competitively priced (1)

JDG1980 (2438906) | more than 2 years ago | (#38536942)

Atoms are the weakest x86 chips currently on the market, by a substantial margin. The 32nm refresh won't change this, since the core isn't changing and clock speeds aren't being increased much if at all. It will, at least, fix the lack of 1080p video support. Still, it's hard to justify an Atom processor for even the most casual user when AMD Bobcat E-350 motherboards are available for $100 or so from good brands. And for a few tens of dollars more than that, you can get a decent if plain micro-ATX H61 motherboard and Sandy Bridge Celeron that beats the Bobcat by a wide margin. You pay a bit more money for a massive jump in performance, and Atoms are so weak that even casual users will see performance problems when trying to browse sites with heavy JavaScript, edit photos, play simple Flash games, or perform other basic tasks.

At $80-$100, Atom motherboards just don't make any sense. Intel needs to be selling the things at Raspberry Pi price levels – $25 or $35. With their manufacturing tech, they could still make a profit at that level, considering how tiny the die size is.

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