Firstly this is a pretty far fetched rumor BUT interesting non the less because of what appears to be a tie in to a "Drawbridge" like technology!
As a recap, there are a few that believe MS/AMD/IBM are building a system that goes beyond the GCN 1.0 that we see today. They believe it will be a true "Heterogeneous Systems Architecture" with unified memory, efficient scheduling, QoS guarantees and a programming model that can compile to multiple ISAs (i.e. WinRT).
In these discussions there is talk of the evolution of an APU into something called an APD (Accellerated Processing Device), and this APD is pretty much a supercharged futuristic GPU(GPU+CPU's + other pieces supporting it) ..
Basically AMD/ATI have a bunch of patents recently released (2011/2012) that they believe look like the architecture for XBox Next and its family of future devices, and all revolving around this new futuristic APD..
Anyway one of the cited patents shows how these futuristic APU's (APD) fixes one of the biggest problems with todays GPU's, a way for accessiblity of its resources in a virtualized way..
And when i saw this it reminded me of the Drawbridge work of elevating lots of the api's from kernel into usermode
Pic from the patent "Accessibility of graphics processing compute resources" :
description of diagram in patent :
"....it is possible to avoid kernel mode transitions beyond initialization of an application."
"Each user mode application includes a runtime 502, allowing establishment and connection of resources with the application. Instead of channeling commands through DXGKRNL 504 (which is the Microsoft Windows DirectX graphics kernel subsystem, representative of legacy graphics-oriented kernel mode driver interfaces to the APD), through the examples illustrated above, system stack 500 introduces an IOMMUv2 driver 506, which permits allocation of memory and command queues for applications ..."
Past Microsoft video of drawbridge , and an explanation of its goals:
Anyway there are some very juicy, though far fetching , rumors going around out there around IBM/AMD/Microsoft and their collaboration for XBoxNext + family of devices.. I know most of the HW related rumors probably don't interest most here BUT the software/OS/api side, like above, im guessing do..
3 days till Xbox Next reveal