About a month ago, the rumor mill hinted that AMD’s Llano accelerated processing unit might not arrive until the third quarter of next year. Now, another source has chimed in with similar news. DigiTimes says it has learned from sources at motherboard makers that mass-production of the upcoming APU actually won’t kick off until August or September. The site attributes this setback to "lower-than-expected" yields on GlobalFoundries’ 32-nm fab process.
If production really doesn’t begin until the late summer, the actual retail launch may very well slip into the fourth quarter of 2011. At that point, Llano could face only the tail end of Intel’s 32-nm Sandy Bridge onslaught and have to spend most of its lifetime competing against Ivy Bridge, the 22-nm successor to Sandy Bridge. For the record, Ivy Bridge was already in "sample production" two months ago.
And here I was thinking the Sandy Bridge vs. Llano contest would already be a little one-sided, considering the latter is based on the same CPU architecture as today’s Phenom IIs.
On the upside, DigiTimes adds that Brazos APUs are already shipping, with "about 100 related products to be showcased at CES 2011." Some sites are also reporting that AMD will kick off production of chips based on its next-gen Bulldozer architecture as early as next April.