Later this year, we should start seeing nettops and netbooks based on the second-gen, system-on-a-chip version of the Atom processor. According to the folks at Fudzilla, though, Intel may cash in on the change by charging more for some Atom SoCs.
Fudzilla claims the desktop SoC lineup will include a dual-core Atom D510 and a single-core Atom D410, both with 1.66GHz clock speeds and 512KB of cache per core. The D510 will supposedly cost $63, up from $43 for the existing 1.6GHz Atom 330. Fudzilla also quotes a $43 price tag for the D410, which would be up from $29 for the single-core, desktop-bound Atom 230.
Now, as the site points out, the Atom SoC design does put the graphics processor and memory controller on the same die as the processor core. That could explain the price hike, especially if Intel ends up charging less for the chipset. Then again, based on recent statements by Intel CEO Paul Otellini and Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang, Atom CPU-and-chipset bundles may actually be priced below lone Atom CPUs.
We'll probably see for sure if there's a price hike when actual Atom SoC-based systems start coming out. In any case, charging more for Atom CPUs could encourage PC makers to opt for faster, Core-based chips.