Rumour has it that AMD is looking to get one over on long-time rival Intel with its next southbridge, by offering integrated USB 3.0 support.
According to everybody's favourite rumour broker, DigiTimes
, AMD's next-generation laptop southbridge - the Hudson D1 - could well feature support for the high-speed interconnection offering by the end of the year.
Designed for ultra-portable laptops and netbooks, the Hudson D1 southbridge is expected to appear in products during the fourth quarter of this year - and if USB 3.0 support is true, will beat Intel to the punch by quite some time with the company not looking to include USB 3.0 support in its own chips until 2012 at the earliest
DigiTimes' claim comes from "sources from notebook makers
" who, in turn, claim that AMD is talking to Renesas Electronics - since merged with NEC - about licensing the technology for use in its up-coming chipsets.
If true, it's a canny move on AMD's part: by including USB 3.0 support in its southbridge, AMD can offer a one-stop solution for manufacturers wanting to produce ultra-portable devices that offer the latest connectivity - whereas those looking to use Intel chips will be left scrambling for a third-party USB 3.0 controller, which adds complication - and additional power drain - to the design.
So far AMD hasn't confirmed or denied the rumours, so we may just have to wait until the end of the year to see what future ultra-slim AMD-based laptops are packing.
Is USB 3.0 a major consideration for future laptop purchases, or do you think that Intel is right to sit this one out and let others - including AMD - try the technology out and gauge demand? Share your thoughts over in the forums