AMD's new Zen-based Ryzen and Athlon Chromebook CPUs crank the Intel pressure

AMD today announced a collection of Zen-based mobile processors destined for Chromebooks. The new batch of processors includes three Ryzen CPUs and two Athlon CPUs that seem to cover the mid and high-range pretty well. AMD promises some big improvements over previous generation AMD-based Chromebooks, and we should start seeing Chromebooks featuring these new processors launching by the end of the year.

The two new Athlon CPUs are the Silver 3050C and the Gold 3150C. The Silver 3050C brings up the rear in this case, with two cores/two threads and a base frequency of 2.3 Ghz. We'll also only see two GPU cores in that processor, compared to the Gold 3150C's three GPU cores, 2C/4T, and base clock speed of 2.4Ghz.

The Ryzen 3 3250C, on the other hand, features similar specifications to its Athlon Gold cousin, with 2C/4T, a base frequency of 2.6GHz, and three GPU cores. The Ryzen 5 3500C boasts four cores and 8 threads, a base clock speed of 2.1GHz (but a boost clock speed of 3.7GHz) and 8 GPU cores, which is a fairly significant jump over the Ryzen 3 3250C. Then we have the star of the show, the Ryzen 7 3700C, a 4C/8T processor with 10 GPU cores.

Many of AMD's claims of boosted performance center around that Ryzen 7 3700C, with AMD saying that it should provide as much as 251% boost to graphics performance, 104% faster office productivity, and up to 152% better photo editing performance over previous-gen AMD Chromebooks. One thing to keep in mind is that the Ryzen 5 and 7 CPUs here are using second-gen Zen+ architecture, while the rest of the CPUs are using first-generation Zen, meaning we're not getting the newest Zen architecture with any of these chips.

AMD says that we'll see Chromebooks based on these processors launching from its OEM partners in the coming months, with Acer, ASUS, HP, and Lenovo specifically launching new Chromebooks within Q4 2020. We'll keep an ear to the ground for more on these Chromebook CPUs and the machines they'll power, so stay tuned for that.