Following the success of its AspireRevo line of nettops, Acer seems to maintain a strong interest in NVIDIA's ION platforms, especially the upcoming second-generation NVIDIA ION 2. The ION 2 is supposedly designed with support for the upcoming Pineview processors from Intel, specifically Atom N450, N470, D510 or D410 CPUs, and also the Tiger Point chipsets from Acer.
Digitimes reported that, although its sources said that NVIDIA refused to respond to market hearsay, the ION 2 might have already landed some orders from the now second leading worldwide PC supplier. This may be owed to the design of the ION 2, which will likely function more like a discrete graphics processing unit, because the netbook-aimed Intel Pine Trail-M and Pine Trail-D for nettop shift the functions of the northbridge onto the central processor.
Details on the NVIDIA ION 2 platform are still in short supply even though it was scheduled for release during Q4 2009. The platform allegedly has double the shader count of the current ION platform. The ION 2 will have a faster IGP and better performance for CUDA applications. Thanks to Acer's continued interest, NVIDIA's ION platform might continue to grow and even see many design wins, despite the ongoing litigations with Intel.
Acer recently announced rather interesting, if not ambitious, plans for its future releases. These include the groundbreaking DirectX 11-capable Aspire 8942G-728G1280TWN laptop (set for January) and a netbook running Google Chrome OS scheduled for the second half of 2010, which would effectively become the first netbook to run that operating system.
Acer might be interested in releasing an ION2-powered netbook early next year, so as to fill the gap until the Chrome-based one is completed. Currently, the ION 2 is known to support the aforementioned Intel LGA 775 and Atom processors, Acer's Tiger Point, and, according to Digitimes, implementing support for VIA Technologies platforms is still part of NVIDIA's plans for the near future.
If the rumors turn out to be true, the Consumer Electronics Show in January 2010 might actually see Acer releasing a new ION 2-based nettop or netbook.
Acer Devising NVIDIA ION 2-Based Netbooks and Nettops
ION 2 chipsets support Intel's LGA 775 and Atom processors