Intel and ARM are the chips getting all the buzz leading up to the expected launch of Windows 8 tablets this fall, but AMD showed a prototype tablet to prove it’s serious about getting into the market as well.
At the giant Computex trade show in Taipei, Taiwan, AMD showed off a prototype tablet powered by its new Trinity Accelerated Processing Unit (APU) architecture.
InformationWeek reports the prototype, manufactured by Taiwan's Compal Electronics, features an 11.6-inch display with a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels. The prototype also has a bit of a hybrid (tablet/notebook) feel with the addition of a detachable keyboard dock and kickstand for hands-free viewing.
The chipmaker didn’t reveal much about performance or how Trinity-based tablets might stack up against the competition, but Intel is already devoting considerable resources to get its Atom processors to compete more effectively versus ARM chips known for their low power consumption.
Engadget posted a brief hands-on video walk through of the AMD reference design tablet that noted the form factor is very similar to other Windows 8 tablet prototypes shown so far. AMD gets credit for one of the more spacious keyboard docks, with plenty of room to type on. The dock also includes a number of ports including an Ethernet jack, HDMI in and dual USB ports.
AMD declined to offer any details about battery life, which could be further tweaked given the device is only a prototype at this point. Presumably part of AMD’s mission at Computex was to line up other tablet vendors to sign on to using Trinity. But in a follow-up email to TabTimes, an AMD spokeman did say the Compal Hybrid uses a 17-watt 2nd-Gen A-Series part, but without the keyboard in tablet mode only uses a mere 5 watts.