Via confirms Willamette chipset plans

Taiwan manufacturing giant is readying next-gen chipsets regardless of Intel's plans

Via Technologies has assured its customers that it is coming up with a chipset for Intel's next-generation Willamette chip, even though it hasn't yet been handed a license for the project.

Intel has so far not licensed any outside company to make chipsets for next-generation processors such as Willamette and Itanium, but Via told journalists at the Platform 2000 conference in California that it fully intends to build a Willamette chipset.

The move is important because Via's chipset would support Double Data Rate (DDR) memory, which competes with Direct Rambus memory in high-end systems. Intel's chipsets so far do not support DDR, although it has said it theoretically supports DDR for servers.

In an related announcement, Toshiba America Electronic Components launched several high-speed 256-mbit DRAMs using Rambus, DDR and fast cycle (FC) RAM. The announcement comes just a few weeks after Toshiba settled a licensing dispute with Rambus, agreeing to pay licensing fees.

The new parts, which all use Toshiba's 0.175-micron manufacturing process, are aimed mainly at workstations and servers.

See Chips Central for daily hardware news, including an interactive timeline of AMD and Intel's upcoming product launches.

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