Nvidia has announced that Microsoft has given the company's low cost Ion platform Windows Vista WHQL certification and expects the first products based on it to be released this summer.
The company said it is working with "Microsoft, PC manufacturers, software developers and Windows eco-system partners
" to bring Ion-based PCs to market in a few months from now.
Ion-based mini-notebooks and small form factor desktop PCs are set to start at prices as low as $299 (£240 in the UK) and will deliver an appreciably better computing experience than existing products at this price point.
"Customers have told us they expect a full Windows experience across a variety of PC designs. What many people call a ‘netbook’ today is really a small notebook, and users expect it to perform like one,
" explained Mike Ybarra, general manager of the Windows division at Microsoft. "With Nvidia’s Ion platform combined with Windows Vista Home Premium, consumers can get an affordable, premium Windows experience in a small notebook or desktop form factor. From browsing the web and checking email to streaming music or watching movies, it’s an excellent solution for everyday computing.
To certify Nvidia's Ion platform, Nvidia says that Microsoft tested the platform to ensure it can deliver:
- Silky smooth 1080p high definition video, including Blu-ray movies
- Exciting video game play with support for Microsoft's DirectX 10 API
- Support for premium Windows Vista features, including Aero Glass and Flip3D
- GPU acceleration for faster photo editing and video transcoding
It seems that now all we're waiting for is for designs to start turning up - I guess we'll start to see them around the Computex timeframe in June. In the meantime, you can discuss the news in the forums