IBM Confirms WII U Utilizes Power-Based CPU, Not Power 7
"Wii U chip clarification: It's a 'Power-based microprocessor,'" @IBMWatson stated in a Twitter post.
Previous information seemed to suggest the Wii U would tap into IBM's Power 7 architecture, but IBM chalked that up to a miscommunication in a followup tweet.
"Pardon the error. It's a custom chip built on Power Architecture base," the company said.
There have been rumors that the the Wii U's "Expresso" (codename) processor is essentially just a faster clocked version of the "Broadway" chip used in the first generation Wii console, which would explain why performance might stutter when there are several things happening on the screen all at once. This happened during a Wii U demo of Warriors Orochi 3 Hyper, in which the developer told Eurogamer that the slowdown in performance and reduced frame rates compared to previous Dynasty Warrior games is due to the Wii U's CPU.
"One of the weaknesses of the Wii U compared to PS3 and Xbox 360 is the CPU power is a little bit less," the developer explained. "So for games in the Warriors series, including Dynasty Warriors and Warriors Orochi, when you have a lot of enemies coming at you at once, the performance tends to be affected because of the CPU."
The Wii U launches November 18 starting at $300 for the Basic version (white) and $350 for the Deluxe (black), which adds more storage (32GB versus 8GB), a gamepad stand, gamepad cradle, and console stand.