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ATI exec talks Wii chip

We ain't seen nothing yet.

Dark blue icons of video game controllers on a light blue background
Image credit: Eurogamer

ATI executive John Swinimer has declared that the full capabilities of the Nintendo Wii have yet to be revealed, since we've only been given a taster of what the machine can do so far.

Speaking to GameDaily, Swinimer said: "I think what you saw [at E3] was just the tip of the iceberg of what the Hollywood chip can bring to the Nintendo Wii."

However, he declined to talk tech, stating: "I really don't think that it's about the [specs]; I think it's about the innovation that it brings to the table - the motion-sensing, the always-on capability, which is really cool too - the fact that the chip is powerful enough and responsive enough to be there at a moment's notice.

"I think that's pretty cool for the average gamer," he added.

Swinimer was hesitant to discuss how the Wii's Hollywood chip squares up to the Xbox 360 GPU, which ATI is also responsible for: "They're different chips for different platforms and different uses. I don't think it's a fair comparison to put them on a chart. That's not what it's all about."

"I think if you focus on the capabilities that the chip will have for the average consumer, with the amazement and wow factor, I think that's the value that we bring."

Swinimer did confirm that ATI has been working very closely with Nintendo, and that "The team that worked on this chip also worked on the Flipper chip that was in GameCube. They've been working with Nintendo for a very long time so there's a great chemistry with the two teams working together."

Exactly how the Wii will compare to the GameCube in terms of power is not yet known. However, some developers estimate that the new console will run at around four times the speed of its predecessor, once both the CPU and GPU are factored in. More conservative estimates suggest the Wii will run at around double the speed of the GameCube.

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