New low-power Athlon in the works?

— 1:03 PM on January 22, 2003

The Inquirer is reporting that AMD has a low-power version of the Athlon in the works:

AT A CONFERENCE CALL last week, AMD executives said the firm was expected to introduce a notebook CPU this quarter that would fit into the now popular "thin and light" category.

AMD is, we understand, working on a low powered Athlon which only uses around 10 to 15 watts, and the rumour mill has it that it is already selling this chip in the Far East, in particular Japan – in limited quantities so far.

A low-power Athlon would likely face off against VIA's new Nehemiah C3, Intel's upcoming Centrino platform, and existing low-power chips from Transmeta. Given AMD's limited resources and their devotion to the Hammer platform, I wouldn't expect low-power chips to contain any significant design changes.

There's been a lot of talk in the industry about the need for a new killer app to drive sales of ever-faster processors, but could portability and lower power consumption shift the focus of consumers away from chips that are only faster than the previous generation?

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