As odd as the rumors we heard about triple-core AMD processors yesterday may have seemed, they were apparently accurate. AMD has now announced the addition of triple-core Phenom CPUs to its processor roadmap. The company expects the chips to become available some time in the first quarter of 2008.
Describing its rationale for the introduction of triple-core processors, AMD cites numbers from market research firm Mercury Research that say quad-core CPUs only accounted for 2% of desktop shipments in the second quarter of this year. AMD believes this slow adoption rate calls for a wider range of multi-core offerings, and it says triple-core chips may "stimulate broader multi-core adoption." Not only that, but AMD boasts that its native quad-core design puts it in a "unique position" to provide chips with two, three, and four cores.
Performance-wise, AMD says triple-core chips will deliver significantly higher performance than dual-core offerings in benchmarks like SYSmark 2007 and 3DMark06. Interestingly, AMD also claims triple-core processors can significantly outperform similar quad-core chips in "certain gaming and digital content creation scenarios."