the biggest questions that we just got the answer to is if Intel’s upcoming GN40 chipset for Atom CPUs can play full HD at 1080P. If this is the case, Nvidia’s Ion would lose a good fighting ground.
This is Intel’s official statement regarding the GN40's HD Video capabilities and whether or not it can play a Blu-ray discs or that kind of content.
This is what the product managers from intel have to say: “GN40 is designed to do 1080P HD playback for typical broadband internet content; it is not designed to enable full Blu-ray capability where the bitrates and demands of multi-layer content are significantly higher than that of internet HD content.”
The way we understand this statement is that some 1080P content from the internet might have a chance, but not as extensive as the one you find on Blu-ray discs. We are quite sure that Microsoft’s 1080P WMV file format should work, while 1080P decoding of H.264 and VC1 might not.
Nvidia made us care about 1080P, but when you think about it, there won’t be any 10-inch netbooks with a 1080P capable display for a while. However, on the desktop side, Nvidia's Ion might have a good chance to beat Intel's new chipset.
Intel's GN40 Atom chipset can do 1080p