Apple may be giving Nvidia the cold shoulder, but the green giant seems to have deepened its volatile relationship with sometimes-rival Intel, at least when it comes to new PCs that will be running on the new Sandy Bridge CPUs. Nvidia has announced today that 200 different Sandy Bridge systems being released in the first half of 2011 will feature its GeForce GPUs.
The move suggests that while Sandy Bridge's integrated graphics are much improved, they still won't be sufficient for many users, especially gamers. It also puts AMD at an even greater disadvantage than it already is at when it comes to securing more market share for its Radeon graphics, especially in the laptop market.
In its press release, Nvidia details the manufacturers who will be producing desktops and notebooks with the GeForce-and-Sandy Bridge combination, including big names like Acer, Alienware, ASUS, Dell, HP, Lenovo, Samsung, Sony, and Toshiba. Expect a number of these systems to be announced at next month's CES extravaganza.
According to our sister site CNET, the first mobile Sandy Bridge processors to hit retail products will be quad-core parts, and already Lenovo has jumped the gun and announced the refreshed version of its IdeaPad Y560p laptop for release on January 11. (And a new version of the Alienware M17x are also apparently using those quad-cores.)
Budget buyers will starting hearing about dual-core Sandy Bridge notebooks in February instead, supposedly to give manufacturers a chance to clear their inventories of older stock. Given Nvidia's announcement, it looks like there will be plenty to choose from, not even counting Sandy Bridge systems that will stick with just integrated graphics.