ATI is hiring some new for a next-generation product, the R600.
The move indicates growing aggressiveness in the graphics processors market as well as the belief of the Markham, Ontario-based company in the further growth of the R&D budget that is indissolubly connected with the firm’s sales.
On Sunday, the 25th of April, 2004, The Inquirer web-site reported about the intention of ATI Technologies to hire a team leader to manage Direct 3D driver component quality at its Marlboro plant in the USA. As part of her or his responsibilities, the manager is expected to serve as the primary point of contact within ATI for component quality problems for the Direct 3D driver for the R600 product, according to the report that cited ATI’s official web-site.
However, on Monday, the 25th of April, 2004, ATI Technologies replaced the “R600 code-name” with “next generation products” definition.
A timeframe for the R600 is not known yet, and the advertisement indicated that the works on the R600 are underway. According to ATI's COO it takes about 18-24 months to replace one micro-architecture with another.
ATI Technologies’ code-named R420 visual processing unit aka RADEON X800 expected to be unleashed shortly is something that rely on the architecture used in the RADEON 9800/9700-series of graphics processors, according to the preliminary information. The followers for the R420, such as the code-named R500 product are expected to bring Shader Model 3.0 or Shader Model 4.0 functionality. It is not clear what new the R600 VPU is supposed to bring.