AMD Concedes to Intel's Atom

Those of us who were hoping to see AMD enter the race against Intel’s Atom processor are disappointed to see no such thing unfold today. Instead of unveiling a processor that could stand up against Intel’s power miserly Atom, which is at the heart of every netbook worth mentioning, AMD turned its attention to the slightly more upscale ultraportable market.

AMD introduced two new ultraportable notebook platforms, Congo and Yukon. AMD materials describe Congo as based upon the dual-core “Conesus” CPU with the RS780M and SB710 chipset; and Yukon is based upon a single-core CPU with the RS690E and SB600 chipset. Both platforms aim to provide more capability and power to users “who are dissatisfied with the limited experience offered by mini-notebooks.”

Yukon will have a thermal design power value of 25 W (both processor and chipset), making it incomparable to the Intel Atom. Yukon is planned to be available in the first half of 2009, while Congo will appear in the latter half.

By 2010, AMD’s ultraportable platform will be “Nile,” a dual-core “Geneva” CPU utilizing DDR3. In 2011, AMD plans to introduce the dual-core “Ontario” APU (that’s Accelerated Processing Units) for ultraportable and mini-notebook platforms.

It should be clear by now that Intel has successfully cornered the netbook market with its impressive Atom processor – a claim that AMD will leave to its competitor uncontested.

“Atom is targeting markets we’re not even [going] after,” AMD said, in a comment recorded by, adding that Yukon will offer a more ‘complete’ PC experience.

Bahr Mahoney, director of AMD’s mobile division, said that the company won’t be going after the netbook market as volume is dramatically in favor of more powerful machines. Mahoney also added that AMD will not offer specific solutions for the business user. “We don’t offer the ultimate in the battery life that some of the enterprise customers are looking for in enterprise ulramobiles,” said Mahoney.

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  • Pei-chen
    Don't worry. AMD still has the OLPC market in Africa and South Asia.
  • Anonymous
    AMD : "Actually we suck at CPUs these days , we just don't want to fight another Intel CPU" , oh well , giving up without even a fight.
    And what about VIA , they seemed to have a good CPU , the Nano , and they seemed proud of it but I haven't seen it anywhere , it's full of those old and oh so poor performing C7. Then again VIA was never good at anything , too bad though , this would have been their chance to grab a bigger margin in the CPU market.
    Then again it seems ARM is going after Intel in the netbook market and they seem to be using Linux so things will certainly get interesting.
  • kelfen
    Pei-chenDon't worry. AMD still has the OLPC market in Africa and South Asia.

    That made me laugh but odly it is so true!