AMD's low-power Mullins APU has scored a major design win. HP has adopted the Jaguar-based chip for its Pavilion 10z netbook. The Windows 8.1 machine starts at just $249.99, putting it firmly in Chromebook territory. And it doesn't look half bad, either:
There are, however, a few caveats. The E1 Micro-6200T APU is the runt of the Mullins family, with only two cores clocked up to 1.4GHz. Full-fat implementations sport quad cores, and the top model scales up to 2.2GHz. Higher-end Mullins variants also have faster GPU and memory clocks.
HP combines the SoC with 2GB of low-power DDR3 memory and 500GB of 5,400-RPM mechanical storage. Meh. The 10.1" touchscreen has a 1366x768 resolution and LED backlighting, but the panel is likely based on TN technology. There's no mention of wide viewing angles or color depth. Other features include USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports, a 100Mbps Ethernet jack, an SD card reader, and a "Miracast compatible" wireless implementation—probably 802.11n Wi-Fi.
Although the underlying APU has a 4W thermal envelope, don't expect marathon run times. HP says the 24Wh battery is good for "up to 4 hours" of video playback. The Pavilion isn't particularly svelte, either; it's 0.89" (22.6 mm) thick and 2.5 lbs.
Compromises are inescapable for PCs in this price range, but it's important to remember that this is basically a tiny Windows PC for only 250 bucks. You get a keyboard and a touchpad and everything, and that's pretty neat. Thanks to VR Zone's Chinese site for the tip.