Next month may bring a new and improved Atom chip from Intel in the 2GHz Z550. The CPU features low 2.4-watt power consumption, 512KB of level-2 cache, and a 533MHz frontside bus. It’s expected to be pretty close to the currently-available 1.86GHz Z540, but with the added bump in gigahertz.
The Z500 series of CPUs is normally reserved for UMPCs and MIDs, so it’d make sense that the Z550 would crop up in those devices. Although with the fastest netbook CPU currently topping out at 1.66GHz, perhaps we’ll see some enterprising system builders plugging the Z550 into a netbook or nettop computer. That, or Intel’s got a faster N-series CPU just around the corner as well.