This year will still be the year of 40nm chips and only next year will we see some 28nm chips. Both Nvidia and ATI are planning to launch its next, next generation at some point in late 2011.
We've learned that ATI is working on two different chips in 28nm, one for its long time partner TSMC and one for its upcoming star, the one and only Globalfoundries.
Globalfoundries has a hard task, as this chip has to be successful and it's the perfect opportunity to make some money in the complex GPU market. In case ATI's chip proves successful, Nvidia should most likely also sign to make its future chips at this fab.
Globalfoundries also misses an opportunity with the Ontario chip, AMD’s first 40nm as this will be done by TSMC. The reason is simple, Globalfoundries doesn’t have a 40nm high end process that would fit the needs of complex CPU and GPU design.
ATI’s graphics development team has a tougher task to develop two GPUs for two fabs, and we’ve learned from the past that you do need to adjust a chip design for a specific fab - one design for UMC and one for TSMC, which will be the case with Globalfoundries design.
The first 28nm GPU from Globalfoundries is expected in late 2011 but we expect to see some prototypes and wafers earlier.