Wow, this not only answers a lot of hardware questions as to what ATI has been up to, it also raise brand new ones as to what they were thinking?
As microprocessors increase in efficiency and semiconductors diminish in size, the power required for them to function would also decrease — in an ideal world, anyway. Unfortunately, this hasn’t exactly been the case. If we’re to believe the rumors, ATI’s next major graphics core, dubbed the R600, will be packed to the brim with pixel pipelines and shader processors to handle the tasks that lie ahead in Windows Vista (if it ever comes out, of course), and, you know, games. But the crazy part here is that the chipset will supposedly require so much power that only an external implementation could provide the level of power necessary to satisfy those demands. An outboard graphics card, however, would one-up internal boards by providing a new level of flexibility…. Source: Engadget