There was a joint press conference held today in Taipei, Taiwan between Microsoft and NVIDIA, showcasing the new NVIDIA Ion platform for netbooks/nettops and other ultraportable or low-power devices. It was hosted by NVIDIA’s general managers for their MCP and notebook business units, and involved Microsoft’s Senior Director for OEMs and Senior Manager for the Windows client business group. It was announced that the Ion platform (NVIDIA’s GeForce 9400M graphics chipset and Intel’s Atom CPU) has been officially certified by Microsoft for Microsoft Windows Vista Premium.
NVIDIA also showed off the Ion running Microsoft Windows 7. Existing chipsets (namely the Intel 945G) do not fully support DirectX 10 and other graphics features, while the Ion platform/chipset is able to handle them very well. In fact, the demonstration involved running a full 1080p move in the background while NVIDIA was giving the Powerpoint demonstration. They also described being able to encode/transcode video in the background while watching HD video. They also demonstrated “Left 4 Dead” running in 720p video (the game is very graphics-intensive).