In contrast to an earlier report originating from Fudzilla that said AMD might be delaying Barcelona to September or later, AMD has come out and officially announced their plans – and they are good. In a press release issued today, AMD has announced that the first Barcelona CPUs using AMD's native quad-core design will be here in August.
That is to say, August is when AMD will begin mass shipments of the units, with actual platforms appearing in September. This is better than earlier rumors, which led many to believe that they would not be available until potentially as far as late October. Many vendors have eagerly looked forward to seeing AMD's new design, since it is the first CPU that will feature a native quad-core architecture:
” ... it is the world’s first x86 CPU to integrate four processing cores on a single die of silicon – Quad-Core AMD Opteron™ processors can deliver significant performance and performance-per-watt enhancements over existing processor architectures yet are designed to be backwards compatible with existing AMD Opteron platforms. “
Backwards compatibility will be a big issue here, since that historically has not been Intel's stance – new motherboards and upgraded chipsets are often prerequisites for each new iteration of the Xeon. That may be a key selling point for AMD, one that helps them get back on the horse after getting beat for pretty much the past year.
Both the low-power variant of the Barcelona core CPUs and the standard chip will be available at launch. Hopefully this means that their desktop lineup such as the Phenom is on schedule as well. You can read the full press release at AMD's site.