Pegatron will be showing an ARM-based netbook reference design at CES which Freescale think will be thinner, run for 8 hours and will hit the $200 mark by end of 2009.
At its heart, the i.MX51 is designed around a 1-GHz Cortex A8 core, ARM’s most powerful, offering 1.8 times more performance per MHz than the ARM 11 core and roughly 3 times the processor performance of an iPhone, Burchers said. Because the Cortex is an integrated core, with its peripherals built into the chip, the company believes that between 6 to 8 millimeters can be shaved off of the thickness of a netbook, versus an Atom processor, he said.
This will be an interesting one to hear about from CES. How will the Linux-based OS feel? Fast enough? The 1Ghz Cortex core should be capable of returning a reasonable experience but I wouldn’t expect it to be as fast as an Atom-based design. If it’s slick, thin, long-lasting and cheap though, maybe it doesn’t need to be.
Sascha of netbooknews.de will be out in Vegas in a few days and promises to report back on this so expect some more detailed news during the CES period later this week.
Update: More news at Cnet.