Rumour had it that we'd be waiting until nearer the end of the year for Intel's dual-core Atom chips, but that seems not to be the case. As confirmed by a short but sweet press release, Intel is now shipping the Intel Atom Processor 330 - in effect two N270s, as sported by just abut every netbook going.
The CPU boasts a 1.6GHz clock speed, 1MB of L2 cache (512KB per core) and a 667MHz FSB, all within an 8W TDP. Rather than finding its way into netbooks, though, Intel is aiming this chip at nettops - such as the Asus Eee Box. With the ability to cope with four threads at a time (two per core, thanks to HyperThreading), the Atom 330 should make such systems much better at coping with the rigours of day-to-day use.
We already knew all this, of course. What's really important about this announcement is that we should see dual-core packing nettops much sooner than initially expected. Doubtless Asus will have an updated Eee Box in due course. Maybe MSI will see sense and drop VIA from its Titan 700, too.
Something for the Christmas list, possibly. Although I doubt anyone has stockings big enough to fit a nettop in…