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Tuesday, October 09, 2012
AMD Debuts Dual-core Hondo APU For Tablets

Advanced Micro Devices is trying to make an impact in the tablet market with its new dual-core Z-60 chip which the company introduced on Tuesday.

Beyond tablets, the new Z-60 dual-core chip, code-named Hondo, could be used in hybrid PC-tablet devices. The AMD Z-60 is AMD?s lowest power APU and promises to deliver high performance and AMD AllDay power for tablet form factors as thin as 10mm.

"Tablet users seeking an uncompromised experience for both creating and consuming content on the Microsoft Windows 8 platform now have a performance-driven, affordable option with the AMD Z-60 APU," said Steve Belt, corporate vice president of Ultra-Low Power Products, AMD. "We see a large gap between the lower performance and high-price competitive offerings that allow AMD to be in tablet designs that will please our customers and end users alike."

The AMD Z-60 APU comes loaded with features including AMD Start Now technology that allows fast boot and resume from sleep times, up to eight hours of battery life while Web browsing, and up to six hours of HD video playback. The Hondo chip will run at a clock speed of 1GHz and draw 4.5 watts of power. The chip will have 80 integrated Radeon graphics processor cores, which support full HD 1080p resolution, HDMI output for external displays, and Microsoft Direct X11.

Tablets with AMD APUs can also leverage the AMD AppZone, a resource for accessing applications.

The first tablets based on the AMD Z-60 APU are expected to launch globally this year in conjunction with availability of Windows 8.

Hondo is based on the AMD's old chip roadmap, but the company plans next year to release a new tablet chip code-named Tamesh, which will be based on the faster and more power-efficient Jaguar CPU core.

AMD will compete with Intel and ARM, although the Hondo chip seems to be positioned as a solution between ARM and Atom and Core for mid-priced productivity tablets.

ARM's processors will appear in tablets with Microsoft's Windows RT OS. Dell, Asus, Samsung are scheduled to launch tablets with RT. Qualcomm, Nvidia and Texas Instruments are making ARM-based chips for Windows RT tablets.

Intel is offering the an Atom Clover Trail chip for tablets, which will also offer 10 hours of battery life.

AMD Z-60 APU Specifications

AMD Radeon Brand: HD6250
TDP: 4.5W
CPU Cores: 2
Clock Speed: 1GHz
AMD Radeon Cores: 80
GPU Clock Speed: 275MHz
DDR3 Speed: DDR3-1066/DDR3L-1066
USB Support: 3.0
L2 Cache: 1MB

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