October 27, 2009 at 2:55 pm
We are only now just starting to see Nvidia’s ION chipset hitting netbooks and the general consensus appears to be that it was well worth the wait (despite a hit to battery life). However, Fudzilla is reporting that ION 2 is scheduled to launch before the year is out and will deliver twice the graphical power of its predecessor.
I’d take the news with a pinch of salt as Nvidia would no want to cannibalize sales so soon after ION’s launch. Personally, I’d be surprised if we saw ION 2 netbooks before Q2 2010. The interesting part is that we are expected to see switchable graphics next year that will allow you to disable the Nvidia GPU to preserve the battery when not needed. That could be a real killer feature for netbooks going forward, marring an uncompromised computing experience with strong battery life.
In other news, Fudzilla is also reporting that netbooks based on 1.66GHz Atom Pineview processors will see their Intel suggested retail price drop from $299 to $249-$299. Whether this translates to cheaper netbooks for the end-consumer remains to be seen.