More details emerge on Toshiba's AMD-based laptops

A little more detail is known about the new laptops from Toshiba that will use processors from Advanced Micro Devices.

Toshiba will launch three laptops in its Satellite range in North America based on AMD's Turion 64 X2 dual-core chip and M690 chipset, AMD said on Wednesday. Toshiba, which confirmed plans on Tuesday for AMD machines but offered no details, said Wednesday that the computers will be available in the third quarter.

The M690 chipset has just been launched by AMD and will, according to the company, help reduce power consumption and lead to a 25 % increase in battery life compared to the previous-generation AMD platform.

The Japanese PC maker, which ranked fourth in the laptop market in the first quarter of this year, hasn't used AMD chips in laptops since 2000.

In an antitrust lawsuit filed against processor-rival Intel in 2005 AMD alleged that Toshiba stopped using its chips after receiving a "very substantial" payment from Intel. Toshiba was receiving "market development funds" from Intel worth about $25 million to $30 million per quarter and those would be jeopardized if it used AMD chips, the lawsuit alleged.

AMD is stepping up pressure against Intel in the laptop market and recently disclosed plans to launch a new laptop platform called Puma in 2008. Puma is AMD's answer to Intel's recently launched Santa Rosa laptop platform.

The two companies also are locked in competition at the bottom end of the laptop market. AMD scored the contract to supply chips for One Laptop Per Child's $100 laptop after which Intel introduced its own machine for emerging markets, the Classmate PC.

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