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Nvidia Ion to Support VIA Nano Later This Year

The Intel Atom by itself is a mild-mannered, rather modest processor. Its special ability is its low power consumption, but that by itself doesn’t mean that it has to be part of a low powered system.

We’ve seen first hand just how the Nvidia Ion chipset is able to make an Intel Atom system a viable day-to-day machine for most uses, multimedia included.

Nvidia isn’t going to just limit its Ion platform to Intel chips, as it is currently working on a second generation Ion that will support a greater range of CPUs. Digitimes reports that the VIA Nano will soon be paired with the Ion.

In a previous interview, Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang had good things to say about VIA’s mobile processor. Huang described VIA’s Nano processor as “fabulous,” and perhaps “architecturally one generation beyond Atom.”

The problem, he said, is beyond the hardware: “The challenge in the complexity of the PC is the software outside of the processor. The amount of software and hardware outside of the CPU is so much, unless you have tier-one capabilities, you can’t build a tier-one-capable machine. That’s really VIA’s weakness. They don’t have the resources to build the GPU in the system to be competitive.”

Of course, that's where Nvidia hopes to step in with its next Ion. Perhaps we'll see first signs of the Ion 2 at this year's Computex in July.

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • sacre
    Good.

    Keep moving forward nVidia.
    Reply
  • Hatecrime69
    Nice, maybe with nvidia's help we may actually see some nano systems floating around
    Reply
  • Tekkamanraiden
    Hmmm an Ion Nano. I like the sound of that.
    Reply
  • cruiseoveride
    WTF Didnt Toms even do a review on the Atom and *proved* an underclocked athlon has a lower total system power usage than an Atom system????

    Atom sucks.

    Go Nano! The Atom Smasher
    Reply
  • Great! Definitely my way to put a vote against Intel!
    Sorry to say but the big company's monopoly is causing trouble in the nation for healthy competition, and without knowing it they are stopping progress.

    I'm glad Nvidia and Via 'chip' together there,

    I only fear Intel will be ready with their newer 'Atom' and GPU+memory controller on chip (not on die).
    Reply
  • megajynx
    Sounds like nVidia is getting in bed with someone else because Intel wont play nice anymore. I swear these companies are like a soap opera now:

    nVidia: YOU'RE NEVER THERE FOR ME ANYMORE
    Intel: Well you violated my trust!
    nVidia: VIA was never this neglectful to me....


    =P
    Reply
  • sacre
    megajynxSounds like nVidia is getting in bed with someone else because Intel wont play nice anymore. I swear these companies are like a soap opera now:nVidia: YOU'RE NEVER THERE FOR ME ANYMOREIntel: Well you violated my trust!nVidia: VIA was never this neglectful to me....=P
    ahah, so true, so true.
    Reply
  • blackened144
    ProDigit80Great! Definitely my way to put a vote against Intel!Sorry to say but the big company's monopoly is causing trouble in the nation for healthy competition, and without knowing it they are stopping progress.I'm glad Nvidia and Via 'chip' together there,I only fear Intel will be ready with their newer 'Atom' and GPU+memory controller on chip (not on die).I dont have a problem with Intel's "monopoly".. I just bought a Q6600 on sale for $160 a few weeks back.. If thats a monopoly, then we need more of them..
    Reply
  • hairycat101
    This partnering cause anyone else to think about the rumor of Nvidia's temptation towards CPU design? Would be kind of cool if they could actually make some competition for Intel seeing as how DAAMIT can't seem to figure out how to.
    Reply
  • nekatreven
    I may be mistaken...but I was pretty sure Jen-Hsun Huang said the Nano was one generation behind the Atom.
    Reply