AMD has been hard at work for over a year now on the Excavator CPU architecture known as Carrizo. In a call, AMD said that the new architecture is ready and will be shipping this quarter for both.
The Excavator CPU architecture is the last in AMD's Bulldozer series of architectures. Though we don't know much about the new core yet, we do know that it is based on Bulldozer, and as such we can expect to see a CPU utilizing Clustered Multi-Threading (CMT). In addition, just like the current AMD Kaveri APUs, the chips will be HSA compliant.
AMD didn't give too much information on the new core, but it did say that battery life will increase substantially. AMD expects up to double the battery life for video playback with up to 40 percent more battery life in productivity scenarios.
According to AMD, the APUs will come FreeSync-ready, and they will have 40 percent or greater graphics power than an Intel Core i5. The systems would also use a new compression standard that allows for 4K or 1080p streaming.
Most details about the CPU cores weren't given, but according to a graph, AMD showed an increase in IPC over the previous architecture. Energy efficiency might show greater improvement, as we were previously assured by AMD that a 40 percent power drop is expected from Carrizo compared to Steamroller.
AMD didn't say much about the GPU used in the APU, either. Hopefully, the iGPU will use the same architecture AMD R9 300 series currently under development, but it's possible that the system will continue to use the older architecture found inside of current AMD GPUs.
If AMD's strategy works out, however, Carrizo will be short-lived. AMD's road map shows that 7th Gen APUs will replace Carrizo next year. AMD hasn't said which core type will replace Carrizo, but AMD has been working on a new series of CPU cores designed from the ground up, also codenamed "Zen." This core is expected to be released in 2016 also, and ostensibly offers much greater performance.
The new chips will be available in AMD's FX and A-series APU lines, and will be notebook SKUs.
Ed. note: A previous version of this article had a critical error. We pulled it, heavily revised it, and are now re-posting.