AMD's desktop Kaveri chips rumoured for February

October 29, 2013 | 10:20

Tags: #accelerated-processing-un #accelerated-processing-unit #apu #cortex-a5 #cpu #gcn #hsa #jaguar #kaveri #paper-launch #playstation-4 #steamroller #xbox-one

Companies: #amd #arm

AMD is claimed to be planning a 'paper launch' for its Kaveri desktop accelerated processing units (APUs) in December, ahead of channel availability of at least three models by February 2013.

The latest iteration of AMD's heterogeneous systems architecture (HSA) platform, which will include unified CPU and GPU address spaces for improved cooperation, Kaveri promises significant improvements over current-generation APUs. Based on the Steamroller microarchitecture, Kaveri chips are tipped to include graphics processing cores based on the Graphics Core Next architecture and - in selected models, at least - an integrated ARM Cortex-A5 core, which will form a security sub-system which runs separately from the main processor.

While original rumours had suggested that Kaveri would launch before the year is out, more recent claims have seen the launch pushed back to early 2014. Now, slides leaked by sources unknown to VR-Zone suggest that AMD is looking to 'launch' the chips in early December, but does not plan to have them formally available at retail until February 2014.

The roadmap slides claim that AMD is planning to announce three stock-keeping units (SKUs) at an event in early December: two flagship A10 chips, and a cost-reduced A8 likely formed from dies that didn't pass muster for A10 use. The slide suggests that engineering samples for all three SKUs have already been completed, with production-ready samples scheduled for December ahead of mass production later that month.

It's this December time-frame in which AMD is claimed to be announcing the parts in a paper launch, but there will be a considerable wait before buyers can get their hands on the chips: according to the slides, channel availability of the new APUs will begin in February 2014 to be followed by retail availability later in the year.

Kaveri will mark an important move for AMD as it seeks to capitalise on its design wins in the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One next-generation consoles with powerful APU designs for mid-range gaming desktops.
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