Next-generation Atom platform announced

Pine Trail uses a new line of Atom CPUs and the first round features an integrated graphics and memory controller. These upgrades help the chips consume less power and gives system builders the ability to build smaller machines

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Next-generation Atom platform announced
By  Jason Saundalkar Published  December 28, 2009

Intel has announced details on its next-generation Atom platform, codenamed ‘Pine Trail'. Systems based on Pine Trail are expected to become available from 4 January 2010.

Pine Trail uses a new line of Atom CPUs and the first round features an integrated graphics and memory controller. These upgrades help the chips consume less power and gives system builders the ability to build smaller machines. Performance improvements will also be seen thanks to the integrated graphics and memory controllers.

This platform currently features the Atom N450 processor and Intel NM10 Express chipset. The Atom D410 or dual-core D510 also paired with the NM10 chipset are aimed at entry-level desktop PCs. These CPUs are produced using Intel's 45nm high-k metal gate manufacturing process and the Atom line remain Intel's smallest processor to date. Intel plans to release new CPUs for the platform as the year progresses.

Since the Atom was originally introduced Intel claims to have shipped over 40 million chips to major OEMs around the world. According to ABI Research, total Atom shipments for all segments are expected to continue to grow into the 100s of millions by 2011.

 "The Intel Atom processor has fueled an entirely new category of computing over the last year and a half and we think the growth will continue for devices like netbooks and entry-level PCs built around basic computing and Internet usage models," said Mooly Eden, Intel corporate vice president and general manager of Intel's PC Client Group. "We're excited to be delivering the next-generation Atom platform and working across the industry as we head into a second phase of growth, powering innovative new system designs with better performance, smaller footprints and better battery life."

Intel has over 80 design wins to-date for the new Atom platform from OEMs such as ASUS, Acer, Lenovo, Dell, MSI, Toshiba, Samsung and Fujitsu. While the bulk of the systems will feature the new Windows 7 Starter or Home Basic operating system, consumers will have a choice when it comes to selecting an operating system. Some OEMs will be offering MoblinTM Linux v2 as an alternative for customers who desire a customisable and differentiated user interface.

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