The competition in the netbook chipset world is heating up, as more and more manufacturers are taking shots at their competitors’ products. The latest in the line of companies waiting to rip on others is NVIDIA, which claims its Ion platform – when combined with AMD’s Neo CPU – will “crush” the Intel Atom.
If you put the NVIDIA Ion platform in a netbook combined with an Intel Atom CPU and NVIDIA GPU, the device comes in at about $399. Jen-Hsung Huang says this will give consumers not the “inferior” performance of current devices, but rather the “full PC experience” they crave. Huang says the netbook standard nowadays is “a low-cost PC that doesn’t work that well.” Ouch!
Huang doesn’t say when his Ion netbook combo will come out, but “almost every single OEM in the world is exploring” the possibility. He thinks that any netbook with the NVIDIA Ion in the hatch will beat out any netbook running just the Atom. He went so far as to say that “Atom by itself with Intel integrated graphics would get crushed.” Why? Apparently, Huang thinks the Atom just sucks. He even puts the Athlon Neo and VIA Nano “architecturally one generation beyond Atom,” rationalizing VIA’s current lack of sales by saying it hasn’t software resources to complement its chips.
He also made some comments about the Tegra pletform, an HD-capable mobile chipset by NVIDIA. He expects that, with the Tegra in place, netbooks could bust out an unheard of 2-3 days runtime on a single charge. $199 MIDs with full keyboards are on the way as well.
His words are powerful, but there’s only so long that Jen-Hsung Huang can talk smack until NVIDIA’s products hit netbooks and do the talking for him. Will AMD’s tentativeness about netbook technology temper the ability of the Ion to take control of the market? Hopefully, the new NVIDIA chipset will back Huang as strongly as he’s backed it.