While Intel was banging the drum at CeBit for its Centrino mobile processor and wireless communications chipset, AMD was inevitably marching to a different tune, releasing 12 new mobile Athlon processors for three categories of notebook.

HP, Fujitsu-Siemens, Time and Sharp, along with other manufacturers who don't sell in the UK, all simultaneously announced notebooks based on the chips.

Nearly half the slew of processors announced are the low-voltage Athlon XP-Ms in the 1400+/1500+/1600+/1700+/1800+ AMD performance categories and intended for 'thin and light' notebooks, a sector previously closed to AMD. They draw less than 1W power when the notebook is idle, prolonging battery life.

The 2400+ and 2500+ XP-Ms, based on the Barton core, are intended for 'full-size' notebooks, and it is into this category that HP, Fujitsu-Siemens and Time have bought.

Then there are five XP-Ms, 2000+/2200+/2400+/2500+/2600+, for 'desktop replacement' notebooks — machines you wouldn't carry further than the office car park without a forklift.

Wireless capability is added to all these courtesy of "industry standard solutions". This means that they won’t require proprietary chipsets of the Intel Centrino ilk, "because AMD is not going to force its bundle on the industry", said Robert Stead AMD European marketing director.