External graphics for notebooks.
Whatever Intel, nVidia and AMD might want us to believe, graphics chips on notebooks are for the most part highly disappointing. Being able to buy an external card that can improve that situation is a tempting proposition and one that Fujitsu Siemens, according to leaked slides found by NotebookReview, is preparing to offer with the AMILO Graphics Booster.
Similar to the Asus XG Station (that still hasn’t surfaced) the GraphicsBooster is intended to plug into a notebook to provide graphics grunt when needed (a 470 per cent improvement apparently), while allowing the system to fall back on the more energy efficient internal GPU otherwise.
Fujitsu says that when plugged in the device allows three outputs; a single HDMI and DVI port on the external box and that provided by the notebook itself – presuming a single VGA port on a notebook.
It’s allegedly based on a previously unheard of AMD development called ATI XGP Technology. I’m guessing the latter acronym stands for something along the lines of “eXternal Graphics Port” – companies are generally predictable like that. Quite how the device is connected is not detailed, but as ExpressCard is the only connection able to provide the requisite bandwidth it’s as good a guess as any.
Pricing isn’t mentioned and it isn’t entirely clear whether Fujitsu Siemens will be limiting the GraphicsBooster to its own systems only, since the leaked information is a bit ambiguous. But, with availability scheduled for the next few weeks, at least we won’t have to wait too long to find out. Can it possibly succeed where Asus conspicuously failed?