Intel is holding its Intel Developer Forum (IDF) in Taipei, Taiwan. During the first day Mooly Eden, Intel Vice President and General Manager, Mobility Platforms Group described the latest trends in mobile computing, highlighting forthcoming Intel platforms for notebooks that build on the mobility attributes of performance, battery life, form factor and wireless communications, and also how these attributes can be extended to new device types and usage models.
He also discussed the future of wireless networking connectivity, including mobile WiMAX.
In January 2008, Intel will launch Santa Rosa Refresh, an update to Intel Centrino processor technology that includes the next generation 45nm high-k mobile processor (codenamed Penryn) and improved graphics capabilities. With the Penryn mobile processor, Santa Rosa Refresh-based notebooks receive enhanced performance and battery life features. Graphics improvement for Santa Rosa Refresh focuses on unlocking advanced graphics technologies for an enhanced visual experience, especially with DirectX 10-based applications. Santa Rosa Refresh notebook PCs also contain the Mobile Intel 965 Express chipset family, Intel Next-Gen Wireless-N network connection, Intel 82566MM and 82566MC Gigabit Network Connection and optional Intel Turbo memory.
Mooly showed the next generation Montevina processor technology Intel is targeting to deliver in mid-2008. Montevina includes the new 45nm high-k Intel Penryn mobile processor and the next-generation chipset with DDR3 memory support.
This will be Intel’s first Centrino processor technology for notebooks to offer the option of integrated Wi-Fi and WiMAX wireless technologies for greater wireless broadband access. It will also feature integrated HD-DVD/Blu-ray support for consumers and next generation data manageability and security features for the enterprise. With approximately 40 percent smaller components, Montevina will be ideal for the wide spectrum of notebook designs from sub to full-sized notebooks.
A number of OEMs, including Acer, Asus, Lenovo, Panasonic and Toshiba have already expressed intent to embed WiMAX into next-generation Centrino processor technology-based notebook PCs in 2008.
Gadi Singer, Intel Vice President and Assistant General Manager, Ultra Mobility Group outlined Intel’s strategy to unleash the full internet for mobile users by using low power IA platforms, which drastically reduce CPU and chipset power performance.
He also demonstrated increasing momentum in the ecosystem with a range of announcements and demonstrations throughout his keynote. Of interest was the discussion about the upcoming Intel Menlow platform, scheduled for launch in 1H’08, which is comprised of a ground-up designed processor, codenamed “Silverthorne”, based on a new 45nm Hi-k low power microarchitecture and a new chipset, codenamed “Poulsbo,” based on a ground-up single-chip design.
He highlighted that a Menlow platform will deliver great performance at low power and could fit in a 74mm x 143mm sized motherboard, thus enabling a full internet experience while enabling form factors that are small enough to fit in your pocket.
Singer showed how Silverthorne draws 10x lower power compared to today’s lower power processors (based on pre-silicon estimates). Also, he discussed standardised communications options such as Wi-Fi, 3G and WiMAX for MIDs and UMPCs, thus enabling connected experiences.
Singer provided a sneak peek into the 2009 Intel Moorestown platform which consists of a System on Chip (SOC) and a Communications Hub. The SOC integrates the CPU, graphics, video and memory controller to a single chip and brings the 45nm process benefits to the complex. The Communications Hub provides I/O capabilities for storage, features and wireless integration and the architecture allows for ultra low power operation. Singer announced that the platform idle power for a Moorestown based MID platform will be 10x lower compared to a Menlow based platform.
Intel announced the formation of the MID Innovation alliance at IDF Beijing in April ’07 with industry-leading systems manufacturers Asus, BenQ, Compal, Elektrobit, HTC, Inventec and Quanta. Now Singer announced that these companies had made progress over the last six months on Intel-based Menlow platforms and are on track to bring platforms to the marketplace in 1H’08.
Closing, Singer also announced more than 15 industry companies who have embraced Intel’s ‘Full Internet in Your Pocket’ vision, are investing in the UMPC and MID categories and are expected to bring products over time. These companies included system manufacturers such as Acer, Aigo, Clarion, Fujitsu, Harman-Becker, Hitachi, Lenovo, LG Electronics, NEC, Panasonic, Samsung, and Toshiba, and service providers such as Clearwire, KDDI, Korea Telecom, NTT DoCoMo, and Sprint.